Salty brine will hit metro highways Friday afternoon
For even the most weathered drivers, any amount of snow can pose a challenge.
In an effort to prevent unsafe driving conditions before they emerge, CDOT will begin spraying an antiicing solution on major thoroughfares throughout metro Denver on Friday afternoon a few hours before the flakes fly.
Trucks will coat the asphalt in a rock salt and water brine designed to repel the light snow forecast to begin in the evening, and to make it easier for plows to clear the roads.
This is the first season CDOT is pretreating metroarea highways, although the agency has in past seasons used the technique elsewhere in the state, according to spokeswoman Stacia Sellers. CDOT maintains only major highways, not city streets.
The urban corridor including Denver is expected to get hit with 2 to 4 inches of snow Friday and Saturday.
Temperatures in Denver were expected to plummet Friday evening, hitting a low of minus-3 degrees with potential wind chill making it feel like minus-23. The polar temperatures will continue Saturday, when a high of 6 degrees and a low of minus-4 is forecast. Sunday will be warmer with a high of 31 degrees and a low of 21.
A winter storm warning is in effect in the north and central mountains from 11 p.m. on Thursday until 11 a.m. on Saturday, said Kyle Fredin, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Boulder. The Rabbit Ears Pass corridor could get up to 2 feet of snow, he said, and ski resorts such as Loveland and Vail and the Berthoud Pass backcountry could get 12 to 18 inches.
“Really consider if you have to be in the high country,” Fredin said. In some places, there could be zero visibility due to the storm, which combined with expected high winds will make for dangerous driving conditions. If you do have to drive, he said, “plan ahead.”