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DelDOT prepares for heavy snow coming to Delaware

Delaware Public Media

With as much as a foot of snow possible along the beaches and accumulating snow expected throughout the whole state, DelDOT says it’s prepared.

Crews are already gearing up with the expectation they’ll work throughout the weekend to get roads back into good condition.

Trucks are being loaded with salt. DelDOT has more than 40,000 tons on hand, and during a major statewide event usually needs between 10,000 and 12,000 tons.

DelDOT’s C.R. McLeod said the preparation started prior to Friday.

"We've been brining roads over the past 24 hours across the state which is putting down that liquid salt solution which really helps prevent that initial freeze up from happening on that road surface and again with temperatures being very, very cold this is going to be an all snow event," said McLeod.

McLeod notes that since this storm is a weekend event, it makes it easier for crews to clean the roads. Lighter traffic allows the plows to cover more ground quickly.

He adds with more snow expected downstate, if the roads up north are cleared quicker, plows will be sent to Sussex County to help clear roads.

McLeod also advises for people to stay home especially during the storm as the winds will be blowing the snow making for poor visibility.

And DART is already adjusting its service schedule in advance of the storm. It plans to suspend service in Kent and Sussex Counties on Saturday. A complete rundown of changes, starting Friday, can be found at the DART website.

Delaware is expected to be hit hard with snow Friday night into Saturday.

The nor’easter has triggered winter storm warnings for most of the state and blizzard warnings for the beaches in Sussex County.

Patrick O’Hara is a meteorologist for the National Weather Service, and he said the storm will pack quite a punch.

"The snow will arrive across the southern areas by evening. The snow will continue overnight and through much of the day Saturday. It'll taper off on Saturday evening. There will still be a lot of blowing snow when the snow stops falling there will be a considerable amount of blowing snow. Accumulations will range from about a foot in the southern part of Delaware along the beaches to about four to six inches up by Wilmington and north Delaware," said O’Hara.

O’Hara adds blowing snow will wind up on plowed roads, and cause visibility issues for anyone driving. He recommends staying home on Saturday because of the conditions.

After the snow tapers off Saturday, frigid conditions are expected before temperatures rising into the 30’s Sunday and then up to the mid-to-upper 40’s by Tuesday.

Joe brings over 20 years of experience in news and radio to Delaware Public Media and the All Things Considered host position. He joined DPM in November 2019 as a reporter and fill-in ATC host after six years as a reporter and anchor at commercial radio stations in New Castle and Sussex Counties.