East TN counties preparing for winter weather

By: Stephen McLamb
By: Stephen McLamb

(WVLT) A number of East Tennessee counties are preparing for predicted winter weather.

Bill Dunlap, the Blount Co. Highway Director says, "when it starts, we'll start and we will stay with it till we get the roads clear."

Blount and Sevier county highway officials say they're ready for whatever Mother Nature dishes out, and they didn't wait till the last minute to get ready.

Dunlap says, "we spent all day yesterday, mounting the plows and the salt boxes on the trucks."

Sevier county is not wasting any time.

Glenn Ellis, Sevier Co. Highway Supervisor,"different supervisors are putting chips on the road right now and some of them are presalting some of the hills."

The biggest concern are the foothills.

Dunlap continues, "we've got enough vehicles to put three to four trucks in each zone, more if need be, and certain ones that have heavier population."

Ellis says, "each supervisor has got his list of major roads. We get them first and then we move to the secondary roads."

But if it gets bad, salt stockpiles are plentiful.

Dunlap says, "we're just fortunate that we've not had any rough winters any of the past four winters so we've got salt still that we bought three or four years ago."

As the night comes and temperatures get colder, the chances of freezing precipitation only increases.

Ellis continues, "we're loading the salt trucks up now and probably around eleven o'clock we'll start salting the roads."

So the highway supervisors have some good advice for their crews.

Dunlap says, "go to bed a little early, you know. That's what I intend to do. I intend to go a little early. Of coarse, I'm the first one they call."

Dunlap says the good news is it won't be as costly.

He says the price of salt has only gone up.

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