Flurries take Charlotte area drivers by surprise

Flurries take Charlotte area drivers by surprise

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by BORA KIM / NBC Charlotte

Bio | Email | Follow: @BoraKimWCNC

WCNC.com

Posted on November 13, 2013 at 12:30 AM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 13 at 5:48 AM

CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Snow flurries blanketed parts of Charlotte Tuesday evening, taking some drivers by surprise.

"We were driving up 77 at five-thirty, six o'clock -- it was jam packed.  The weather definitely had an impact on traffic," said Scott Anstrom.

Charles Holiday, visiting from Atlanta said while he doesn't like the dip in temperatures it's the conditions on the roadway that the public should be aware of.

"The roads are slick.  Some people just don't pay attention and they are going faster than they should and then they hit an ice spot and they are messed up.  That's the biggest problem.  the roads get icy," he said.

"I'm ready.  I love winter," said driver Doris Pettis.  "When the weather is bad you have to be extra careful, that's all."

North Carolina Department of Transportation communications officer Jen Thompson urged drivers to be cautious on the roads.  NCDOT monitored the overnight freezing temperatures but have chosen not to pre-treat roads because of the rain Tuesday evening.

"Because this is starting out with a rain event we are not planning to put out any materials because we are going to be wasting time and resources -- it washes off and renders useless.  So what we will have are several contractor trucks in the morning and if anything comes up they will be ready to report areas that are icy or treacherous to drive on," said Thompson.

She said crews have been preparing for the winter weather.  Drivers have been out on ice and snow practice runs to familiarize themselves with all the snow routes.

"We've also been spending the last couple of weeks calibrating our equipment, making sure everything is in proper working order and that we checked our inventory and have plenty of salt and brine materials on hand," she said.

Thompson said they have 70,000 gallons of brine and thousands of tons of salt on hand.

The NCDOT has produced several videos explaining how maintenance crews gear up for the winter months in advance.

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