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Road crews prepare for potential weather across the CSRA

Published: Jan. 14, 2022 at 8:04 PM EST
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - We were live from GDOT’s brine facility in south Augusta where crews have been at work all day long.

We saw where they mix the saltwater solution, it takes about 15 minutes to soften. Then it travels through all the pipes and into the trucks.

But it’s not just road work, many weather preps will continue throughout the CSRA.

“The faster we get it to meltdown, the faster we can put it in the brine tanks over there,” said a GDOT worker.

The substance doesn’t look the best, but it keeps you from sliding on the roadways.

“So, folks come in here and refill in one of these facilities, go back out, just start hitting state highways,” said Kyle Collins, GDOT, district communications.

All day, Friday, department of transportation crews on both sides of the river were prepping the roads with brine in case of icy conditions.

“We learned a lot of lessons back in 2014. Some referred to as ‘snowmageddon’,” he said.

The ice storm that hit the Augusta area eight years ago was followed by fallen trees, hundreds without power, and everything covered in a white layer of snow and ice.

Since then, crews go into preparation mode early when temperatures drop.

“Days before an event like this ever hits, there’s tons of work that people don’t see. That’s getting personnel ready equipment ready, getting brine production facilities like this up and running,” said Collins.

Columbia County EMA is ready too.

“It showed us as a region, and as a county thing that you might have to look forward to and work on just in case this happened again,” Shaun Granato, Columbia County EMA director.

“Calls that come in through our 311 or 911 or citizen calls. Basically, that’ll show up on our map,” he said.

While they monitor conditions from the headquarters. All road, bridge and water crews will be on standby for whatever happens.

They are hoping for the best, but ready for the worst.

“We have 1400 employees in Columbia County and any one of them will be ready in case we need to call them in,” said Granato.

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