SALEM – With rain forecast to transition to sleet and snow on Thursday, March 5, contractors and crews with the Virginia Department of Transportation in western Virginia are prepared to respond. The winter storm has the potential to impact the morning and evening commutes on Thursday and affect travel throughout the day.
Drivers should be aware of the following:
•On Thursday, road conditions will worsen as temperatures fall throughout the day and into the nighttime hours. Conditions could change rapidly as rain transitions to sleet or snow and pavement temperatures drop.
•As long as snow or sleet continues to fall, snowplow operators will be making passes over the interstates and primary roads (those numbered 1-599) and will not proceed to secondary routes (those numbered 600 and above) or neighborhood streets. The interstates and primary roads are VDOT’s first priority for snow removal during a weather event.
•Temperatures are expected to fall and remain below freezing following this storm. This means and wet, slushy or snow-covered roads will freeze and create difficult driving conditions.
Salem District crews will not be pre-treating roads with brine ahead of this storm because the weather event is expected to start out as rain before transitioning to freezing rain or snow. With rain forecasted ahead of frozen precipitation, the brine would wash off roads and not be effective.
Travelers are reminded that they can get real-time information on road conditions, traffic incidents and congestion on Virginia roads by using VDOT’s 511 free mobile app or the www.511Virginia.org website and phone system.
The Salem District includes the counties of Bedford, Botetourt, Carroll, Craig, Floyd, Franklin, Giles, Henry, Montgomery, Patrick, Pulaski, and Roanoke.