Photo: A salt/sand mixture material is loaded into a county truck being sent to treat bridges ahead of expected winter weather. (DeSoto County Government photo)
DeSoto County crews spent Wednesday preparing for winter weather that is expected to begin overnight. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for DeSoto County and the Mid-South that will go into effect from 3 a.m. until 6 p.m. There is a chance the county could see a mixture of freezing rain, sleet, and snow starting at 12 midnight.
“DeSoto County is prepared for whatever the storm may bring,” said Michael Lee, President, DeSoto County Board of Supervisors.
Wednesday, DeSoto County Road crews prepped equipment and pretreated some bridges and overpasses with a salt/sand mixture.
DeSoto County has seven trucks loaded with a salt/sand mixture and seven tractors with blades ready to go. The equipment is staged at the Central Maintenance shop in Nesbit, along with the county’s maintenance shops in Walls, Eudora, and Olive Branch. Together, they will service troubled areas across the more than 660 miles of roads in unincorporated DeSoto County.
“The treatment of bridges and overpasses is a priority because bridges typically freeze faster than roads,” said Supervisor Lee.
Once winter weather begins, county road crews, Supervisors, Emergency Management Agency personnel and Sheriff’s Department deputies will begin assessing conditions on the roads, bridges, and overpasses. Areas of concern will be treated and the public will be informed of dangerous areas to avoid.
The Mississippi Department of Transportation is responsible for treating state roads and highways including; I-55 and U.S Highway 78/I-22, U.S. Highways 51, 61, state Highways 305, 304, and 302 (Goodman Road). Municipalities are responsible for treating their own roads and bridges.
“The public is asked to stay off the roads during the storm, if possible,” said Supervisor Jessie Medlin. “It is sometimes hard to see ice on the roads, especially during the night.”