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Here's how North Texans can prepare for freezing weather this winter

A truck pours liquid onto a road.
Pablo Arauz Peña
A brine truck pours a salt-based liquid that prevents ice from sticking on the road outside the Texas Department of Transportation district offices in Mesquite.

Transportation officials are sharing tips on how North Texans can prepare for another winter storm.

As winter approaches, state transportation officials in Dallas and Fort Worth are getting a head start in case freezing weather hits North Texas again.

A severe winter storm hit the state in February, causing power outages and major traffic accidents as already frozen roads prevented salt from sticking.

Val Lopez, with the Texas Department of Transportation's Fort Worth district, is encouraging drivers to start preparing now.

“Whether that's having extra clothing, water, having their vehicle adequately maintained, they're making sure their tires are up to standard so that they could drive during inclement weather situations,” Lopez said.

Daniel Armbruster, with AAA Texas, also recommends that drivers carry an emergency kit. This can include a flashlight with extra batteries, reflective triangles and a first aid kit.

Outside the district offices for the Texas Department of Transportation in Mesquite, a truck spreads a liquid salt “brine” on the roads.

"We want to ensure that should a winter weather event happen, we are prepared to tackle that event," said Patrick Clarke with the Texas Department of Transportation's Dallas District.

He said the brine trucks are an important component in case of freezing weather. The liquid keeps the ice from sticking to the road so that crews can remove the ice for drivers.

Clarke said that when temperatures drop below freezing point, the brine is not as effective at removing ice from the road. That’s when drivers need to do their part.

"We appeal to drivers to slow down, drive to the conditions and not the speed limit. Or sometimes in severe weather — stay off the roads," he said.

Got a tip? Email Pablo Arauz Peña at parauzpena@kera.orgKERA News is made possible through the generosity of our members. If you find this reporting valuable, consider making a tax-deductible gift today. Thank you.

Pablo Arauz Peña is the breaking news reporter for KERA News.