Cold Weather road safety

In this Times Jan. 3, 2018 file photo, a Cullman City Police Officer walks toward a truck working to de-ice U.S. 278 East next to First United Methodist Church.

If you need to get out today, you need to do it before early afternoon when temperatures are expected to drop below freezing again and the wet roads become sheets of ice.

Cullman County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director Phyllis Little said that as the sun rose Monday morning, there were icy roads in the northwest corner of Cullman County and on the bridge at Hwy 278 and Springhill Road. Temperatures rose more than expected, going above freezing, but were expected to begin dropping again in early afternoon.

“So it it’s wet, it’s going to freeze,” said Little. “If you’ve got to do something, do it before then.”

The Cullman County Commission met Monday morning in a special called meeting to approve a local emergency proclamation, giving the county the ability to make decisions related to the weather situation more quickly.

The city of Cullman has de-icing trucks out currently and will continue to de-ice as needed.

The icy conditions are expected to continue into Wednesday as the temperature is going to be in the teens overnight on Tuesday. No power outages have been reported as of Monday, but Little said several volunteer fire departments have posted that they have generators and stations will be open if there are widespread power outages.

The warming on Monday is helping melt the ice from tree limbs, said Little, which will possibly help reduce incidents of icy limbs falling on power lines. While the temperature on Tuesday is not expected to get above freezing, anticipated wind gusts could help dry up some of the precipitation.

“If the sun shines, that will definitely be a plus,” said Little. “Overall, it’s likely that we’re going to be experiencing icy conditions starting tonight and going through tomorrow.”

Amy Henderson can be reached at 256-734-2131 Ext. 216.

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