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TDOT, City of Memphis Prepare Roadways For Possible Ice

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(Memphis) Crews are hard at work across the Mid-South preparing for possible winter weather.

On the interstates you can find TDOT crews working to have the roadways covered in a brine mixture before nightfall on Monday.

“This year we are adding 10 percent potato juice.

Potato juice is a byproduct of making vodka and it is really an effective de-icer.

"We are using like a 10 percent solution in with our brine mixture. It’s a very inexpensive product when we do it that way,” said TDOT Director of Maintenance Bill Hazlerig.

Hazlerig said that TDOT has also spent $800,000 this year to prepare west Tennessee for winter weather this year.

“We have purchased what we call ground speed indicators. If we set the rate of salt we want per lane mile, whatever speed we go that’s what it’s putting out,” said Hazlerig which he said will ensure salt is not wasted and used efficiently. “We also have some smaller trucks that we are utilizing for the smaller areas.”

In the City of Memphis, Public Works Director Dwan Gilliom said that crews are putting down brine but will do most of their work once the frozen precipitation begins to fall, “As we speak right now we do have the brine units out running because these are the same trucks that we sue for our de-icing operation. We are going to focus our efforts having those trucks ready mainly on if and when we start receiving frozen precipitation."

Gilliom recommended that drivers not drive if it is not essential, “We will have 13 salt spreaders out running various routes, which includes your major through fares, your inclines, your declines, your bridges , your overpasses and your major intersections. Also your areas around your police stations, around your hospital and fire stations.”

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