DALLAS-FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – The winter weather could impact travel on Wednesday.
TxDOT crews have been out the past two days, pre-treating roads with brine ahead of the storm.
The brine, which is a mixture of salt and water, is meant prevent any precipitation that comes down from forming into ice on the roadways.
Crews primarily focus on pre-treating the elevated surfaces, like bridges and interchanges, since those tend to freeze first, but trucks had enough time ahead of this storm to hit all of the main lanes of the highways, too.
“Preparation for winter weather does not start in the winter,” said Val Lopez with the TxDOT Fort Worth District. “We start planning the fall, where we reorder and restock our supplies. We train up our personnel and calibrate the equipment. So long before we get cool temperatures, TxDOT is ready to go.”
Every Fort Worth Fire Department truck is carrying tire chains and bags of ice melt to make sure they can respond to any emergencies Wednesdays
There will also be six four-wheel drive brush trucks stationed throughout the city that can tow cars off bridges and other dangerous spots.
The fire department anticipates a big increase in accidents Wednesday.
If you see them responding to a wreck on the side of the highway, make sure to slow down and give them plenty of room to work.
“We cannot help people that need help if we’re hurt,” said Mike Drivdahl with the FWFD. “If our fire truck gets in a wreck because somebody wasn’t paying attention, that’s one less fire truck we’ve got to respond to an emergency in the city at that point.”
Both TxDOT and the FWFD ask drivers to just stay home if they can if roads are bad. If you have to get out on the roads, take it slow and give the car in front of you extra room.
In Dallas, DART rail and bus teams are closely monitoring the weather to make sure there isn’t a disruption in service.
Crews have been out checking the overhead power lines that power the vehicles. They’ve also put a de-icing agent on the connectors, so if it dips below freezing, it shouldn’t affect the trains.
Cold weather has temporarily halted service in the past, but DART doesn’t think that will be the case tomorrow. Maintenance procedures have changed to include a special inspection of both rail and overheard wire when there’s a 20 degree or more temperature drop in a 24-hour period.
“We’re pretty much a 24 hour operation at this point, with about 22-and-a-half hours of service,” said Gordon Shattles with DART. “So we will have crews, both rail and bus, on standby if we have any issues. Our maintenance crews are prepared, and I think we’re going to be ready for service throughout the day.”
DART knows a lot of people will be riding the train or bus to work early Wednesday morning. They encourage people to sign up for DART alerts, so they can be notified quickly of any issues with transportation.