SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – South Carolina Department of Transportation Crews headed out Thursday across the Upstate ahead of a weekend winter storm.
“Our motto is always to just prepare for the worst,” said SCDOT public information coordinator Brittany Harriot. “We of course are still monitoring.”
She said crews are working to get ahead of the expected winter weather.
“In the anticipation of a winter mix, winter weather, or even snow, SCDOT is just actively preparing for what’s to come. It’s our normal routine, we have employees stationed at each one of our districts,” said Harriot.
Crews are pre-treating roads with brine and salt to help fight off potential snow and ice. They’re currently targeting high traveled roads and highways.
“Our primary focus right now is to pretreat all interstates and routes that are essential to movement, make sure that ramps are clear, that routes to hospitals are clear, just routes that police would take to get on either the primary or secondary roads,” said Harriot.
South Carolina High Way Patrol leaders encourage people to stay home, if there’s winter weather covering the roads.
“We see a lot of inexperienced drivers, especially folks that have only grown up in the south and they’re not used to driving in the snow or ice,” said Master Trooper Mitchell Ridgeway with SCHP.
Master trooper ridgeway said crashes can be more common, which could strain resources.
“It increases the number of calls we have to respond to, which, then of course, increases the wait time for some of these people,” said Ridgway.
He said for people who do have to go out, drivers should go slow and make sure their car is ready for the elements.
“Make sure your vehicle’s tires are in good condition as far as tread and tire pressure. Make sure your exterior lights are in good condition, your headlights, fog lights, taillights, break lights,” said Ridgway.
He said snow and ice can be hazardous and hard to see.
“Don’t panic if you hit black ice. The worst thing you can do is oversteer or jam your breaks or accelerate,” said Ridgeway.
Highway Patrol leaders also encourage people to pack an emergency bag in their car before driving this weekend. It should include things like water, food, and blankets.
SCDOT asks drivers to give road crews space and to stay back if they see them working this weekend.