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Road Crews Brace for Snow Storm

MoDOT plans to pre-treat roads right before winter weather hits the area. They will have 225 trucks out driving across Mid-Missouri, 25 of them in Boone County starting at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday.MoDOT workers prepped the sand and trucks on Wednesday and will be driving overnight and likely work for 36 hours through Thursday. They will focus on state roads like I-70, Highway 63, Providence, and Stadium.Road crews have treated easy freeze areas like bridges and overpasses, and are ready with generators to keep the process going even if the power goes out.Columbia Public Works said as of Wednesday night their trucks were set to go, but they won’t hit the roads until 7 a.m Thursday morning.Columbia crews plan to start with 20 to 24 trucks and may add more as the day goes on. They will first hit priority routes which include Broadway, Paris Road and Old Highway 63. Columbia crews won’t move to residential roads unless the city gets more than four inches of snow.In total, trucks in Columbia have to plow more than 1,100 miles if you count every lane. That is the same distance as driving from Mid-Missouri to New York City. Therefore, across Mid-Missouri it’s important the crews don’t start too early.”If we spread salt on I-70 right now, all that material is going to fly off so its kind of useless until we get ready to start getting some precipitation so we can get that stuff down so its effective,” said Jim Williams with MoDOT.As it gets colder overnight, roads will continue to drop in temperature, and emergency crews said that will add to the wintry mix easily sticking to the roads. Jefferson City crews and crews in southern mid-Missouri counties were bracing for more ice than snow Wednesday night. Capital City plows will start pre=treating streets Thursday around 7 a.m., but spent Wednesday afternoon gassing up and getting ready.In Jefferson City, plows will run new routes, just voted on by city council Tuesday night.”We added a number of routes to the list because the list had not been updated in a number of years, and the city has expanded and the city has built new roads,” said public works director Roger Schwartze. “So it was time to take a look at that and get that updated.”Some of the roads added to the priority list include Algoa and Military to the east and Edgewood and South Country Club to the west.The city has 24 trucks on standby overnight. The Jefferson City fire department also said it was expecting a busy morning because of possible ice on the roads. It advised drivers to use extra caution and allow extra time for the morning commute.

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