Nashville crews and drivers prepare for winter weather this week

NDOT snow preps.jpeg
Posted at 5:05 PM, Dec 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-12-21 20:42:00-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The Nashville Department of Transportation & Multimodal Infrastructure (NDOT) will be monitoring weather forecasts closely this week as plummeting temperatures and possible frozen precipitation are in the forecast for Thursday evening.

Crews will be on standby to begin treating roads if needed.

The weather forecast this week is going to feel like winter.

There are chances of rain and snow in the forecast for the next few days, which can make the roads not only wet but icy. A Storm 5 Alert has been called in preparation.

Crews are focusing on primary roads like Briley Parkway, Old Hickory Boulevard, Bell Road and the downtown corridor with streets like Demonbreun and Hermitage Avenue.

"Today we're out brining our primary routes. This afternoon once all our primary routes are brine, we’re going to bring the trucks in and load them up with road salt and put them inside and then we'll be on standby till tomorrow afternoon as temperatures change," said Phillip Jones, NDOT assistant director.

Middle Tennessee drivers are bracing themselves for the next few days.

"If you know how to drive in it, you’ll be OK. Just be careful. Take your time. Drive in low gear," said driver Barbara James.

The rest of the week will be bitterly cold.

Rain and snow are also scheduled and coupled with the frigid temperatures can make for dangerous road conditions.

"I have two sets of twins and we’re staying at home," said driver Amanda Bates. "My husband is a truck driver. He drives for the city, so he’s good, he loves it. But not me? Nun-un."

Others say they have no choice but to hit the road.

"I drove last year. It’s the back roads. Usually, the interstate and the main roads are clear. It’s the backroads that’s hard to get out," James said.

NDOT has 32 trucks are on standby with 9,000 tons of salt.

Already on Wednesday morning, crews were brining the roads.

"Brine is just a mixture of water and salt, and it's a pre-treatment that we put out on the asphalt that helps us keep the snow or ice from binding to the asphalt," Jones said.

The biggest concerns are bridges and overpasses.

But drivers say if you don't have to drive — don't.

"Stay home. If you have to come out, please be careful. It’s not just you. It’s everyone around you. It’s other people. Because people get out and play in it and think it’s fun. It’s not," said Bates.

NDOT will focus on the 28 primary and 28 secondary snow removal routes first.

If you have a street that needs to be clear, you can contact Hub Nashville and after crews finish the primary and secondary routes they will head to the emergency calls.

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