PennDOT crews prepare for slippery road conditions

SUSQUEHANNA TOWNSHIP, DAUPHIN COUNTU, Pa. -- Monday's snowfall might not have amounted to much, but it may have put some people's driving skills to the test.

Meanwhile, PennDOT crews spent the day getting ready for the winter weather and salting the roads.

PennDOT crews started work at midnight, another shift started at noon. They kept busy throughout the day preparing for the worst, and hoping for the best.

A winter weather advisory for central Pennsylvania had PennDOT crews loading up and ready to hit the road.

PennDOT spokesman Mike Crochunis said "probably a little accumulation in the north, a have inch to an inch of sleety, slushy snow, and maybe a little bit more freezing rain in the south. So, not much accumulation to really talk about, but anything could freeze up if it's not treated."

Even though the weather might not look like much, looks can be deceiving.

"We're getting rain, and everyone thinks 'oh well it's ok,' but when it's in the teens and it's raining, that's not good if you have an untreated roadway, sidewalk. You might slip and break your tailbone. It's not very pleasant," Crochunis said.

The midday mix of snow, sleet, and freezing rain made for a cautious combination for drivers, but an onslaught of afternoon rush hour traffic could help PennDOT crews.

"It gets things churned up, and breaks that bond of any kind of icing on the roadway, but when you have stopped vehicles, that presents a concern for us on a ramp or interstate highway," Crochunis said.

Crochunis warns it may take more than PennDOT prep work to keep roadways safe.

"Drive safely, slow down and use precaution. Don't tailgate, because even if the roads wet, it does increase your braking distance, and you don't want to be the cause of any major catastrophe," Crochunis said.

PennDOT officials warn to be careful when attempting to pass one of its crews.

Whether we're plowing or not, we're still spreading salt or monitoring the highways. So, it's probably not a good idea to pass unless you get waved on, or unless you have a clear lane of travel," Crochunis said.