Heads of state brace for possible freezing conditions and urge safety

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – State and local agencies are preparing for potential icy conditions.

“Don’t drive unless you have to,” DOTD communications director Rodney Mallett warned as he and his team prepared the roads for winter conditions.

Heed this warning. The Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) has prepared its staging sites and will be monitoring road conditions, especially bridges and overpasses, over the next few days.

“We have staff that are working 24 hours a day, where they’ve already been here this morning and kind of figured out what their plan is going to be, where they’re going to perform,” Mallett said.

This is the potential first frost of the year. They have a million pounds of salt waiting for the winter season.

“They take them (salt) to a staging area like the US 190 bridge, we have a staging area there, and we will drive until the roads are deemed safe,” he explained. .

State and local leaders work together to provide resources for these types of conditions.

“We generally support the airport and [spray] trails for them if needed, as well as some of our bridges and overpasses,” said Kevin Hill, assistant director of administration for East Baton Rouge Parish.

“Our crisis action team is activated, so those requests for support are starting to come in. We could handle those requests,” said Mike Steele, communications director for the governor’s office for Homeland Security and emergency preparedness.

He said power outages are possible in freezing weather.

“If they start getting ice or snow on those trees or those branches, you know, they might fall a lot easier,” Steele explained.

Authorities encourage you to wrap your hoses, take care of your pets, and have a plan ahead of weather events.

“Keep up to date with the weather. Again, take advantage of the time you have before the weather begins to affect your particular area and take the necessary steps to protect your family and your home,” Steele said.

To keep up to date with any possible road closures or alerts, you can visit 511la.org.

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