INDIANA — The Indiana Department of Transportation is monitoring multiple weather forecasts predicting a mix of rain, freezing rain, snow and ice to move across Indiana beginning Friday evening.
A few degrees can mean the difference between rain, ice or snow, so freezing rain can be difficult for forecasters to pinpoint far in advance. INDOT maintenance supervisors will continue monitoring developing conditions and reports from law enforcement and the public to supplement local weather forecasts.
If the forecast indicates frost or other freezing weather, INDOT sprays a salt-water mixture to pre-treat bridges, which are likely to freeze first. If a storm is predicted to lead off with rain, salt trucks pre-treat our roads just before pavement temperatures fall below freezing and the snow and ice begin to accumulate.
INDOT will adjust its call out of manpower, trucks and materials as appropriate to address changes in forecasted and observed road conditions. Trained INDOT employees are on call to staff plow trucks around the clock with alternating 12- to 16-hour shifts.
Freezing rain and ice can be the most dangerous and difficult conditions for drivers and plow trucks because it affects vehicles of all sizes, including those with four-wheel drive. Motorists are strongly encouraged to avoid non-essential travel within the times and areas where a coating of ice is forecasted to accumulate.
Here are several steps that drivers can take to minimize the risk of losing control on icy roads:
- Consult hourly weather forecasts and schedule high-speed and long-distance trips during the warmer hours of the day. This will help save the extra time needed to slow down and drive according to the conditions.
- Know before you go by checking the red-yellow-green traffic speeds on your map app or online.
- Monitor current air temperatures and slow down if conditions are near or below freezing. Watch how salt trucks, emergency vehicles and other drivers are responding to the weather.
- Apply anti-lock brakes firmly when encountering ice. Pump brakes that are not anti-lock. Do not overcorrect with steering.
- Drivers can monitor road conditions and traffic alerts across the state at any time. Visit www.TrafficWise.IN.gov or dial toll-free (800) 261-ROAD (7623) for INDOT’s TrafficWise Traveler Information Service. Subscribe to receive text and email alerts about INDOT projects and services here.
Find links to INDOT’s regional Facebook and Twitter pages here. INDOT will be providing snow and ice removal updates with posts tagged #INDOTWinterOps.