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TxDoT preparing roads for possibility of winter weather

Rickey Dailey with TxDOT said the solution will also be spread onto the Crosstown Expressway and SPID all the way to the JFK Causeway.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — And with that freezing weather on the way-- the Texas Department of Transportation(TxDOT) is already hard at work prepping area roads.

TxDOT trucks are getting ready to drop their salt brine along highways and interstates. The mixture is made up of salt and water-- it helps prevent precipitation from freezing on to pavement and structures.

I-37, I-69, Highway 77 and Highway 281 and 181 -- including the Harbor Bridge - will all be treated with the mixture.

Rickey Dailey with TxDOT said the solution will also be spread onto the Crosstown Expressway and SPID all the way to the JFK Causeway.

"If we do get freezing weather, the bridges are the first ones to ice over. So again, that's why we're treating the bridges throughout our district first," Dailey said. "And starting today, you'll see trucks out there today. Please back up, give them little bit of room to apply the deicing agent, this includes the Harbor Bridge and the JFK Causeway."

By pretreating the roads with a method called brining, roads are able to withhold against freezing temperatures., especially with bridges and overpasses. 

"They're exposed, the cold air can get under them, as well as on top of them," Dailey said.

He adds that protecting road structures is often a two step process. Ice rock is used if roads or bridges actually freeze and helps break up the ice which improves traction. However, until the freezing conditions get here, drivers won't know exactly what to expect.

"The best way for the public to prepare for this weather is to watch the news," Dailey said. "Watch the local news. Keep abreast of what the forecast shows."

Sargant Nathan Brandley with the Texas Department of Public Safety(DPS) said that the best strategy to combat the weather is to limit driving to a minimum.

"The best practice really is to not drive if you don't have to at all," Brandley said. "You're gonna be a lot safer staying at home in case of any inclement weather. Especially sleet or ice forming on the roads."

Brandley adds that if you do have to leave your home, then giving yourself plenty of time is the key to being safe. 

"Give yourself plenty of time," Brandley said. "Leave earlier than normal because you know you're going to have to drive slower."

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