If you’re out and about on roads in Wright County this afternoon and evening, you may encounter Wright County Highway Department vehicles spraying the roadways in advance of what is expected to be a relatively significant snow event with a combination of snow and wind.
Wright County Highway Maintenance Supervisor Steve Meyer said the storm is expected to hit Wright County Wednesday morning and conditions will deteriorate quickly.
“Everything that we’re seeing is to expect two to four inches of snow with a lot of wind,” Meyer said. “It is expected to start about 6 o’clock tomorrow morning and run throughout the day. It isn’t supposed to end until about 10 o’clock tomorrow night. At that point, the wind will start dying down.”
Meyer said the bigger issue for roads in the county will be the wind as much or more than the snow. In open areas the snow will be blowing and reducing visibility as well as attaching to the road surface.
The storm isn’t expected until tomorrow, but the Highway Department is out on the roads today. Because of the mild temperatures for this time of year, trucks will be treating the roads today and tonight so the chemicals can reduce the early accumulation of snow on the road surfaces for the morning commute and the a.m. hours Wednesday.
“We’re in the preparation stages for the storm now,” Meyer said. “The trucks are out now and will be out for most of the day. By the time we’re done, we will have treated about a third of our road system, hitting the spots that we know can deteriorate pretty quickly.”
The reason the trucks are out in advance of the storm is that treatment of the roads takes much better when the temperature isn’t frigid. The anticipated high early tomorrow is expected to be about 36 degrees. By Thursday morning, the forecast has a low temperature expected to be 4 degrees below zero.
“The temperature after the storm comes through is going to drop like a rock,” Meyer said. “We’re going to try to get something down underneath what’s coming so it will help our crews remove the snow when it comes and before the temperatures get too cold that the chemicals aren’t effective. Our goal is to have all the roads cleared and good to go by noon Thursday before people take off for where they’re going for Christmas.”