Jackson County braces for overnight freeze

Jackson County braces for overnight freeze
(Photo Source: WLOX News Now)

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - In Jackson County, emergency management officials say they're preparing for the potential freeze overnight and its impact on roadways.

Rain throughout Friday created wet roadways across the coast. As temperatures drop, driving conditions will become increasingly more dangerous. For Jackson County Emergency Service Director Earl Etheridge, that means taking precautions ahead of time.

"The county, yesterday, put rock salt out to keep any ice from forming and they did that on the county bridges, not on the state highway bridges, but on the county bridges," he said.

The rock salt mixed with the rainwater should turn into a brine.

"If it doesn't have a lot of rain, it's very effective at keeping the ice from forming," he said

In Pascagoula, city leaders put sand on the Pascagoula River high rise bridge Thursday night, but that led to some accidents. Etheridge said as temperatures fall below freezing, that could have even more unintended consequences.

"The problem with sand is when it gets wet with rain, it turns into mud. Mud will freeze and you can have issues there," he said.

Etheridge said the county is taking steps to keep motorists safe, but he urges people to avoid driving if they can. He said if a hard freeze does come, it won't be just bridges and overpasses that become slippery. Even roadways that are not interstates or major highways could become frozen, too.

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