The employees include drivers, managers and mechanics. Atlanta is under a winter storm watch from 7 p.m. Tuesday to 7 a.m. Thursday. The forecast calls for snow and freezing rain.
The winter weather is not expected to reach as far south as the Tifton area. However, if snow and ice develop in southwest Georgia, the employees of GDOT’s District 4 will be ready with motor graders and spreaders, District Maintenance Engineer Stacy Aultman said. District 4 encompasses the counties of Atkinson, Baker, Ben Hill, Berrien, Brooks, Calhoun, Clay, Clinch, Coffee, Colquitt, Cook, Crisp, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Echols, Grady, Irwin, Lanier, Lee, Lowndes, Miller, Mitchell, Quitman, Randolph, Seminole, Terrell, Thomas, Tift, Turner, Wilcox and Worth.
Approximately 2,130 GDOT maintenance and construction employees are available for active duty across the state. Nearly all GDOT personnel will be on call across affected parts of the state.
Statewide, the Department has:
•22,199 tons of salt
•41,953 tons of gravel
•70,500 gallons of brine
•705 pieces of available equipment
New equipment, including snowplows, liquid saddlebag tanks for dump trucks, liquid deicer sprayers and a brine maker, are now part of the Department’s arsenal. In addition, several contractors have signed agreements and are ready to assist to address hazardous winter precipitation.
Department communications personnel will provide road condition updates to the public via Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/GeorgiaDOT) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/gadeptoftrans). Citizens may also access roadway conditions at the Department’s winter weather web site (http://www.dot.ga.gov/winterweather).
Motorists are asked to avoid roadways where icing occurs unless travel is absolutely necessary. Those who must be on the road are reminded of these safety tips:
•Motorists should be mindful of Georgia DOT crews working to clear the snow and ice from interstates and state routes.
•Motorists should not pass a DOT dump truck spreading a mixture of salt/gravel, as gravel may bounce up and could break windshields. Please follow at least 100 feet behind DOT vehicles.
•SLOW DOWN to at least half your normal speed and use a low gear as you drive.
•If you come to a traffic signal that is not working, treat it as a four-way stop.
•Beware of black ice, especially on bridges.
•Watch for fallen trees or power lines.