JEFFERSON CITY – The weather forecast is calling for a light wintry mix of freezing rain, sleet and snow to hit parts of south and central Missouri on Sunday, and the Missouri Department of Transportation is reminding motorists to be prepared for the possibility of slick roads.
Rain is also expected in some areas and could cause icy conditions because pavement temperatures remain very low following several weeks of bitter cold weather.
MoDOT crews will carefully monitor road conditions and treat and plow state-maintained bridges and overpasses as needed.
“Each winter storm is different, and we adjust our tools, materials and practices accordingly,” said MoDOT Central District Maintenance Engineer Jason Shafer. “What doesn’t change is the fact that we’ll be out in full force doing all we can to ensure safe travels for drivers.”
Motorists should be aware that bridges and overpasses generally freeze first, so they should use caution, reduce speed and brake gently in these areas.
“Even a little precipitation can cause slippery roads, so drivers need to be alert and drive for the conditions,” Shafer said.
Shafer encourages motorists to allow extra time for their travels and slow down if they encounter slick conditions.
“Ice can be very deceptive because it’s hard to see on the road,” Shafer said. “It's called black ice because it tends to look like the rest of the pavement on the road, but it's actually clear. It’s easy for drivers to be caught off guard, especially if they aren’t paying attention and are driving too fast."
MoDOT offers a variety of tools to help drivers get where they are going safely. The department’s Traveler Information Map, located at www.modot.org, offers the latest road conditions, as well as real-time traffic flow and traffic cameras that provide a view of traffic on the interstates.
MoDOT also has a toll-free customer service line which is answered 24-hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.   A customer service representative can be reached by calling 1-888-ASK-MoDOT (275-6636).