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VDOT begins pre-storm treatment, Hampton Roads crews stand ready ahead of potential winter weather

The 757 is expected to see mostly rain, but temps will stay cool. Local and state crews are getting ready just in case the system worsens in our area.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) Hampton Roads said it anticipates a mostly rain event on this cold weekend.

13News Now meteorologists predict that a wintry mix could trickle in the area, beginning Sunday morning.

Crews with VDOT started laying down brine on interstates and primary roads Friday morning.

"So, they put it down while the pavement is dry. It absorbs into the pavement and then, that helps to lower the temperature and helps to prevent icing over on the roadways," said Holly Christopher, district communications manager for VDOT Hampton Roads. 

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Makayla Jones, a student in Virginia Beach, headed home to Roanoke Friday night. That's where the forecast looks snowier.

"I was like, ‘oh my God.’ It’s unbelievable, kind of, because it was so warm on Christmas," she told 13News Now. 

Jones was glad she didn't have to travel across Virginia Friday, like in conditions after New Year's.

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“It was so nasty. Trees were in the middle of the highway. I just didn’t like at all. I’m so happy I’m going to be on the clear path," she said.  

A clear path — that's what colleges west of Hampton Roads hope their students encounter.

The University of Virginia in Charlottesville is letting certain first-year students move back on Saturday.

James Madison University in Harrisonburg and Virginia Tech in Blacksburg encourage students to return Saturday or after the storm.

Much like the aforementioned schools, public works crews in the Seven Cities are watching the forecasts closely to tailor their response. They said they stand ready.

The City of Hampton told 13News Now they plan to pre-treat roads Sunday.

Credit: City of Hampton, Contributed

Chesapeake has its frost patrol on-call Sunday morning. However, Chesapeake Senior Public Communications Coordinator Elizabeth Vaughn explained that crews can adjust based on the weather system's movement.

If crews have to roll out this weekend, officials offered this reminder:

"Give them room, given them space. Especially in hazardous conditions, we really want to give all motorists space," said Vaughn.

Christopher with VDOT added, "we are encouraging drivers to limit or eliminate any nonessential travel, just for their own safety.”

Moreover, VDOT Hampton Roads pointed out that they're closely tracking the chance for high winds this weekend.

If you come across a downed tree or a downed power line, VDOT wants you to report that either to them at 1-800-367-7623 or city crews — depending on where you are.

Both Vaughn and Christopher also said to check if you have a car emergency kit packed with items like winter gear, non-perishable food, water and chargers.

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