Road crews prepare for snow: ‘We’re ready to rock’

Road crews prepare for snow: ‘We’re ready to rock’
Cincinnati road crews are ready for a winter storm bringing snow this weekend. (Photo: FOX19 NOW/Matt Wood)

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Road crews across the Tri-State are preparing for a busy weekend with the biggest snowfall so far this season coming.

They have been loading trucks with salt and brine and pre-treating streets.

Winter is coming ❄... no really, it is! Cincinnati DPS officials are giving an update on their plans for this weekend's snow. ☃ >> https://bit.ly/2QC3uqV

Posted by FOX19 on Friday, January 11, 2019

“We’ve got plenty of salt. Our 11 domes are totally full, we’re fully loaded and we’re ready to rock,” said Hamilton County Engineer Ted Hubbard. “It’s been a light winter so far and so was last winter."

The county clears 1,800 lane miles of county roads and some state highways including the Ronald Reagan Cross County Highway. Townships focus on their residential roads and the Ohio Department of Transportation plows the interstates.

Cincinnati city road crews and Covington’s “Snow & Ice Team” will be clocking in 12-hour shifts.

Cincinnati workers start at 7 p.m. Friday and will continue on those shifts throughout the weekend as they work to keep roads as safe and passable as possible.

City officials are reminding residents to use caution while driving during the winter event.

With low temperatures, slick spots are possible in areas prone to black ice – including bridges, tunnels, hills and underpasses, they warn.

When available, they say you should park off the street so plows can get through.

Residents are able to track real-time winter operations data via the City of Cincinnati’s CincyInsights Snow Plow Tracker.

They can report urgent matters and customer service requests to the City by calling 513-591-6000, visiting www.5916000.com or by utilizing the Fix it Cincy! mobile app.

For more information on Cincinnati’s winter operations program, please visit www.cincinnati-oh.gov/winter and follow DPS on Twitter and Facebook.

Like Hamilton County, Cincinnati and Covington officials say they have plenty of salt on hand.

Cincinnati has:

  • 26,400  tons of salt 
  • 27,900  gallons of calcium chloride
  • 13,800  gallons of beet juice 
  • 60,000  gallons of brine
  • 81  pieces of equipment

Covington road crews also are raring to go. Plows were attached to trucks Thursday, and a preliminary plan for calling up almost three dozen drivers was circulated.

They have about 1,800 tons of road salt.

“We will finalize our plan of attack in the morning. We usually do that the day before we expect the storm,” said Fleet Manager Steve Hedger, the city’s so-called “snow commander" for this two-week rotation period.

All of the road crews say they will keep a close watch on the forecast to make sure they have the latest storm timeline and accumulation predictions.

This will be the most snowfall we’ve seen in a single weather event since 2015, but it’s expected to be the wet kind that’s easier to clear from roads and sidewalks.

Here’s some reminders for driving in the snow from the City of Cincinnati:

  • Give  Crews Space to Work. Please provide ample space  between vehicles and crews, allowing them to do its job. 
  • Utilize  Off-Street Parking. Parked vehicles along roadways  are a major deterrent for crews when clearing snow and ice. 
  • Keep  an Emergency Kit Ready. Pack an emergency vehicle kit,  including a blanket, socks, cell phone, batteries, flash lights, and  snacks while driving in winter conditions. It’s always better to be overly  prepared while traveling in uncertain weather. 
  • Extend  Caution While Traveling. Even at temperatures above  freezing, if weather conditions are wet, you might encounter ice on  exposed roadways like bridges, underpasses or hills. Allow more room to brake,  when traveling during the winter season.
  • Slow  Down! 

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