SCDOT has issued the following information about the predicted winter weather that is coming our way:
Forecast – Per Mark Malsick – Low pressure over Alabama deepens and is expected to move over the State on Friday bringing a mix of winter weather through Saturday morning. Rain moves over the State late this afternoon changing over to a rain/sleet mix overnight. Counties from Anderson east to Marlboro could see a winter mix with the I-85 corridor being Ground Zero for this winter event. Friday’s morning rain and sleet is expected to transition to a mix including freezing rain. Ice accumulation Friday is in the 0.25-0.4 inch range.
Precipitation changes over to Snow Friday night with tentative amounts along I-85 in the 1-2 inch range. Forecast is still questionable with regards to the track of the storm and how fast the low will move over the State and deepen offshore, which could affect residual wrap-around snow squalls Saturday before noon. Best guess now has clearing late Saturday afternoon.
Saturday night temperatures will drop to the mid-20s for the possibility of black ice. Sunday high temperatures are expected to be in the upper 40s. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning effective 12 AM Friday until 7 PM Saturday.
Engineering District 1 – Plans at this time are to bring crews in around midnight Friday night in all counties and work until there is no longer a threat of ice on roads and bridges. Will continue to monitor the forecast and finalize plans tomorrow. They continue to check equipment (spreaders, scout pickup trucks) and hook up, load, and fuel as necessary to ensure they are ready.
Engineering District 2 –They continue to monitor the weather forecast closely. Personnel in the northern counties are on standby with equipment mounted and trucks loaded. Since heavy rains are expected on the front end of this storm, they do not plan to do any more pretreatment of roadways with brine at this time.
Engineering District 3 – District 3 continues to pretreat routes. They are focusing on the area of I-85 to the northern parts of the counties, especially on the mountain roads. They have initiated their snow and ice plan. Crews are going to 12 hour shifts today. They have mobilized SHEP, TMC, and Construction personnel to operate pickup trucks equipped with salt spreaders starting tonight and operating through Sat morning. They continue to check equipment and prepare in anticipation that the storm will hit around 1am Friday morning.
Engineering District 4 – District 4 has gone to 12 hour shifts this morning and will continue through Saturday afternoon or evening depending on the weather. They continue to pretreat high priority routes with brine in all counties, with a focus on I-77 in York County and I-85 in Cherokee County. The district office will be staffed tonight and will be monitoring the weather throughout the next several days.
Engineering District 5 – Crews will be working tonight in Darlington, Dillon, Florence, Marion, and Marlboro counties. Additional crews in each county are on stand-by and will be ready to assist if needed. Horry is on stand-by with the on-call crew to respond if necessary. Georgetown and Williamsburg are not expected to be impacted and have no staffing plans at this time. The District Office will be manned tonight. Will continue to monitor the weather and will adjust operations as needed to provide a response to winter weather as needed.
Engineering District 6 – Placed on standby to support upstate counties if needed.
Engineering District 7 – Placed on standby to support upstate counties if needed.