2:43 p.m. update: North Georgia motorists caught a break Tuesday as expected winter weather failed to materialize across much of the region.
Roads wet from morning rain were already drying, though the Georgia Department of Transportation warned motorists to be careful overnight and Wednesday morning.
“Sun and wind are playing in our favor,” said GDOT spokeswoman Natalie Dale. “Any remaining moisture may lead to patchy black ice, so we encourage safe and slow travel in the morning.”
Dale said GDOT crews will continue to monitor and treat roads as needed overnight.
8:46 a.m. update: Road conditions remain good across much of Georgia but could deteriorate later today as winter weather leaves freezing temperatures in its wake.
Georgia Department of Transportation spokeswoman Natalie Dale said roads are wet across parts of the northern Georgia. But road and air temperatures remain above freezing.
That’s likely to change as a wintry precipitation passes through the region later. Temperatures are expected to drop after the precipitation passes through, leaving the possibility that wet roads will freeze.
“We’re still seeing warm but wet pavement conditions,” Dale said. “The key will be how much drying we get on the road before the arctic chill comes in.”
GDOT crews have applied more than 140,000 gallons of brine to metro Atlanta highways in preparation for winter weather. Dale said interstates are covered, and the agency is now focused on other state highways.
Many schools and government offices have closed, making it easier for crews to do their work.
“Traffic is light. That’s the best-case scenario,” Dale said. “Just because the roads aren’t bad right now isn’t an indicator of how you should travel throughout the day. The storm hasn’t arrived.”
Original post: Crews are busy treating Georgia roads as a dose of winter weather closes in on the northern part of the state.
Road conditions are good across the state, though some slushy conditions are reported on I-59 in northwest Georgia, according to Natalie Dale, spokeswoman for the Georgia Department of Transportation.
As of early Tuesday, GDOT crews had spread nearly 566,000 gallons of brine on highways across 35 counties under winter weather warnings or advisories. Dale said crews would begin spreading salt and gravel on bridges and overpasses in metro Atlanta around 7 a.m.
Temperatures hovered near 50 degrees ahead of the winter weather, but they’re expected to drop in its wake.
“Roads at this point are in good shape statewide,” Dale said. “But it hasn’t gotten to us yet.”
But she urged motorists to stay off the roads, if they’re able, to allow crews to do their work.
“We understand that when you wake up this morning, it may seem a little warm and, at this point, fairly dry,” Dale said. “Don’t be lulled into a false sense of complacency that you need to spend the day out and about on the road.”