Crews clear roads; Schools close, open late

Posted January 20, 2009
Updated March 9, 2009

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— North Carolina Department of Transportation workers deiced roads Tuesday morning as more than 500 businesses and schools openned late or closed.

WRAL Weather team WRAL WeatherCenter Forecast

DOT trucks refilled their tanks Monday with brine – a water-and-salt mixture that helps prevent ice from bonding to the pavement – and rolled out to treat bridges and major roads before the snow could start. They switched to salt once the snow began falling.

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DOT prepares for snowy, icy roads DOT prepares for snowy, icy roads

In the Triangle, DOT crews are working first on Interstates 40 and 540 and U.S. Highways 1, 64, 264 and 401.

The North Carolina Highway Patrol urged drivers to review safe driving procedures before driving in morning rush hour.

DOT has about 6,000 workers to operate more than 2,500 plow trucks, 632 front-end loaders and back hoes, 650 motor graders and five snow blowers. The department also uses pickup trucks outfitted with snowplows on less-traveled roads.

Local governments can be expected to clear thoroughfares first, then primary roads and through streets in subdivisions, followed by cul-de-sacs. Most towns do not clear private parking lots, including those in apartment and condominium complexes.

Frozen roadways could be a lingering problem. Temperatures will hover near the freezing mark Tuesday and dip back down Wednesday before beginning a gradual rise toward the end of the work week.

Snow forecast brings flurry of activity at grocery stores

Stores were jam packed across the Triangle Monday as customers scrambled to buy everything from bread and milk, to snow shovels and sleds.

Call for flurries sends people flocking to stores Call for flurries sends people flocking to stores

"You got to make sure you have the essentials,” shopper Tara Hun-Dorris said.

Every register was open and every employee called to work at a Harris Teeter on Falls of Neuse in Raleigh.

“It's good for business in this economy. So I'm glad for the Harris Teeter,” Hun-Dorris said.

Business was also brisk at a nearby ACE Hardware store.

"We are hoping to get the kids out there for the first time," shopper David Charland said. "They haven't even seen snow yet."

Sleds flew off the shelves at the store as customers tried to pick the perfect one for snow-packed fun.

"You don't want to get this wrong,” shopper Adam Gold said of his sled purchase.


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