MDOT prepared for wintry precipitation - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

MDOT prepared for wintry precipitation

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Roslyn Anderson - bio | email

CLINTON, MS (WLBT) – Forecasters are expecting significant accumulations of snow Thursday night and Friday afternoon.

That could mean tough travel conditions for motorists.

Wednesday the interstates and highways were dry, but the Mississippi Department of Transportation is preparing for wintry precipitation.

MDOT has 400,000 pounds of rock salt and misselite stored in sheds at their Clinton site ready to tackle any frozen precipitation.

The ice dissolving agents can be poured on Hinds County roadways to provide traction.

Thirty employees are on standby ready to spread the mixtures on streets and bridges on I-20, I-55, I-220 and state highways.

"Based on the precipitation that we're getting or will get and the temperature, that's what we determine when we dispatch," said MDOT Maintenance Superintendent Donald Wash.

If MDOT's "Ice and Snow Plan" takes effect, 15 more workers will be added, and supervisors will monitor the roads and bridges to send them where needed.

"I recommend that if you don't have to be out, stay home," added Wash.

If you heed that advice, Home Depot has what you need to stay warm while inside and to keep utility costs low.

"You've got insulation that you can open up your door and put around the seams; it's self sticking," said Clinton store Assistant Manager Phil Barber.

The Clinton location was not seeing a rush on insulating items because officials said most people stocked up during the last big freeze.

Barber said its relatively cheap, $10.00 to $20.00, to insulate your home and save in the long run.

"If you don't get that house warm, it not only costs you in utilities, but people start getting colds that they pass around. You get door sweeps. You can put chalking around the windows, plastic coating over the windows. You've got great stuff that seals things up, and you can get rid of that draft," said Barber.

He recommended that you cover outside faucet and pipes. Even plastic and duct tape work.

"If you have a house that's raised up off the ground maybe cement blocks, maybe a mobile home, even you've got pipes under there that can be exposed, we've got special insulation that wraps around the pipe quickly," added Barber.

If precipitation begins to freeze, MDOT will go to 12 hour shifts to make sure crews spread rock salt on the heavily traveled areas.

You can also check road conditions by going to www.mstraffic.com or by calling 601-359-7074.

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