Cobb DOT: Roads should clear before Monday thanks to 450 tons of salt

Credit: John Spink

Credit: John Spink

As road crews fight the chance of a dangerous refreeze, Cobb County transportation officials are confident the Monday commute won’t be more aggravating than usual.

Although a winter storm didn't drop the 4 inches of snow like it was supposed to, Cobb's roads are icy. And they could get even more hazardous if crews can't do what they need.

As ice and the light dusting of snow melt to sludge in the Saturday sun, crews need to get salt and brine on that sludge before even colder nighttime temperatures turn that into black ice, which is a tall order for the tired crews.

“It’s going to be worse tonight than it is right now,” said Bill Shelton, head of road maintenance at Cobb’s department of transportation.

No matter how tonight goes, the area will thaw out with estimated temperatures in the 40s Sunday.

Shelton said about 1 p.m. Saturday that four plow trucks and all 12 of his two-vehicle spreading crews are heading north of  Dallas Highway where the snow was worst.

They were focusing on Barrett Parkway along with Canton and Shallowford roads.

He had crews brining the roads Friday, wait until the rain passed and then salt the roads “to let Mother Nature create a brine.”

Shelton said the fact that drivers have stayed off the roads has helped.

So far, workers have dumped 450 tons of salt and 4,000 gallons of brine on the roadways and will continue to work through the night.

Shelton said the spreading salt cost the county $200.

“That’s a small price to pay,” he said.

Shelton slept in his office Friday night and plans on doing so until all of crews are back.

He said it’s worth it, and he’s just glad the storm shifted north, sparing Cobb inches of snow.

“I think we did dodge a bullet,” he said.