NCDOT Prepares Roads for Third Consecutive Week

PITT COUNTY, NC (WITN) – For the third week in a row, North Carolina Department of Transportation maintenance crews are loading their trucks and preparing the roads for winter.

Thousands of gallons of brine were sprayed on East Carolina roads ahead of the weekend.

Because of using so much salt, the Pitt County branch of the DOT had to order more. Still, the department is fully stocked and ready for the weather.

“We have trucks that hold 1,600 gallons all the way up to some that hold 5,000 gallons,” said Jordan Davenport, maintenance engineer for Pitt County.

Trucks can apply brine at a rate of 40 gallons per lane, per mile.

The agency is treating the roads as a precaution for freezing temperatures and forecast snowfall, but before the snowfall, ENC residents should see some rain.

The rain could threaten their work.

“It’s kind of a cheap insurance, if you will, that even if some of it gets washed away, some of it will stay and stick to the pavement and prevent ice from forming on it,” said Jamie Kritzer of the Raleigh DOT branch.

Brine is good for roads because it reduces the possibility of ice forming.

But it’s not good for cars.

“We saw a lot of dirty cars,” said Eric Bailey with A Perfect Shine Everytime car wash. “We have to rinse them very well, twice, before washing them.”

Bailey and her team of car washes use a special wax cleaner to keep the salt from rusting the exterior metal.

“We called the truck two weeks ago to get some more,” Bailey said. “It gets difficult, but that’s our job. We have to do what we have to do.

When it comes to slippery roads, prevention is better than cure.

“If you receive heavy rain after the treatment, it may wash away some of your gear, but if it’s just light rain and not very long lasting, it may still be effective,” Davenport said. “A lot of times we feel like we have to heal ourselves and that way we’re as prepared as possible before the event.”

For another weekend, people are encouraged to stay indoors, away from the wheel.

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