DOT Crews Ride Out Winter Storm - WSPA.com

DOT Crews Ride Out Winter Storm

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7 On Your Side gets in the passenger seat of a DOT truck to find out what it takes to clear the roads of snow. 7 On Your Side gets in the passenger seat of a DOT truck to find out what it takes to clear the roads of snow.

Road Crews have been working 12-hour shifts since Monday in preparation of heavy snowfall. Now that it has arrived in the Carolinas, their work has just begun.

Michael Harkness says there is no ‘snow day’ in his line of work

He is needed to help keep the roads clear.

“It is too bad I can never enjoy it.”

While it is a dangerous job, after 10 years with North Carolina Department of Transportation, Harkness makes it look easy.

“You know where your trouble spots are going to be."

On Wednesday, Harkness raced against Mother Nature to put down salt on areas where snow had started to stick.

"You have to put out a certain amount where it will actually be effective,” Harkness said.

The salt acts as a protective barrier. When enough snow has accumulated, plows can easily scrape it off the asphalt, leaving little to no ice behind.

But Harkness said it's a constant battle.

As he drove along one of the many secondary roads in Polk County, the conditions turned from bad to worse.

Navigating the steep, windy mountain roads takes skill. Drivers go through annual ice and snow removal courses.

But it's during winter storms, when crews really learn what it takes and what they have to give in return.

So far in North Carolina, the DOT has used 2.7 million gallons of brine and 1,500 tons of salt.

In South Carolina, Gov. Haley says 1,500 maintenance workers are out spreading about 4,400 tons of salt on the roads.

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