Metro Detroit road crews prepare for winter storm before the holiday weekend

Metro Detroit road crews are starting to prepare before the season’s first winter storm hits the area this week.

In just days, rain is expected to freeze, turning into snow. Craig Bryson with the Oakland County Road Commission said that the addition of major winds -  it’s going to create an even bigger headache for drivers.

“The wind is probably going to be an issue. We’ve seen forecast anywhere from 45 to 65mph gusts potentially. That’s a big problem both with ice. It’s causes the roads to dry out and ice up. And if we do get a lot of snow, that will cause drifting, which will be a challenge. Our drivers are ready. They know it’s coming. They’re on call 24/7, and we’re watching the weather forecast very closely,” said Bryson.

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Snow plows and salt trucks will be working around the clock when the snow gets here, but it has to be just the right temperature for it to be effective.

“It starts losing its effectiveness down in the single digits and it’s pretty useless. So we’ll salt down to about 10 Degrees. Maybe just a little bit before that,” Bryson added.

As the storm touches down on the weekend of Christmas, things could go either way for responding crews.

“On Friday, that may help us a little bit. There may be less traffic out because of the coming holiday. It’ll be a little bit harder for our workers over the weekend. And there may be a little less traffic on Saturday. I suspect it’ll be hard for some families traveling on the holiday themselves,” Bryson explained.

Of course, main roads will be the priority.

“As long as the snow is drifting back on the roads, we have to keep plowing the main roads, meaning we can’t get into the subdivisions as quickly as we would like to. So that may be a challenge as well,” Bryson insisted.

Those in the suburbs are being asked to be as patient as possible.

“Safety dictates we’ve got more traffic on the primary roads that are moving at a faster speed. We have to get those safe before we move into the subdivisions,” Bryson concluded.

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About the Author:

Victor Williams joined Local 4 News in October of 2019 after working for WOIO in Cleveland, OH, WLOX News in Biloxi, MS, and WBBJ in Jackson, TN. Victor developed a love for journalism after realizing he was a great speaker and writer at an early age.