Rain halts winter weather preparations, what you need to know in an emergency

Rain halts winter weather preparations, what you need to know in an emergency

EVANSVILLE, IN (WFIE) - We will likely start seeing winter weather in the overnight hours. At this point, crews would normally be pretreating roads, but at this time, they are forced to wait.

Crews have not been able to do as much to prepare as they would hope because of the rain. Any materials crews could spread on the roads would just be washed away before the winter weather hits.

Street maintenance crews cleared storm drains and inspected snow removal trucks.

We are told trucks and crews are on standby, ready to tackle the roads after midnight. Because this storm is expected to bring rain, then ice, then snow, you can expect a sheet of ice to form on the roads underneath the snow.

That means even once plows are able to clear the snow, there is still ice below. That ice is very difficult to see and can cause false confidence behind the wheel.

"Anytime a motorist can see part of the pavement, they let their guard down, and they increase their speed. We typically see more issues, more crashes, and slide-offs, when people can actually see part of the pavement," ISP Sgt. Todd Ringle said. "Please keep in mind tomorrow the roadways are going to be treacherous for quite some time. As a matter of fact, it may be some time Saturday, maybe even Sunday, before the roads get back to normal."

On Friday, the roads will be very tricky, so do your part and slow down.

Crews will begin hitting the streets after midnight to get ahead of the freezing rain and snow. Their main focus will be on clearing primary roads that carry heavy traffic.

A few things you should do tonight are fill up your car with gas. Also, check your windshield wipers and wiper fluid. Before getting out and driving tomorrow it is important that you completely clear the ice from all of  your windows and lights.

Police are expecting to be busy, so it may take some time for them to get to you if you get stuck on the roads. You might not think it will happen to you, but just in case, make sure you have your car stocked in case of an emergency.

"It's always a great idea to have a couple of blankets. Make sure you have a cell phone charge. You want to have a bottle of water. It's always a great idea to have a shovel, some extra weight in your trunk, maybe a couple bags of sand," said Sgt. Ringle. "Sometimes when you're stuck, just simply getting out, getting a small shovel and digging that snow around your tires may be enough just to free you."

Sgt. Ringle said if you do get in an accident, just move your car to the side of the road and wait for police to arrive.

He said staying in your car with your seatbelt on is the safest option.

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