Road crews all hands on deck for winter storm ahead

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- Ada County Highway District crews are all hands on deck prepping the road for snow that is expected to hit the Treasure Valley Thursday night through Saturday afternoon.

KBOI meteorologists are calling for three to nine inches of snow in the Treasure Valley over the next 48 hours.

"Three (inches) won't be much of a deal for us to handle," said Craig Quintana, a spokesman for ACHD. "Nine inches, however, over 48 hours, that's heavier accumulation."

Road officials say it depends on how much snow the area gets for them to decide how they can keep roads safe. In these cold temperatures, trucks are putting down more magnesium chloride deicer than usual, and adding sand down for traction.

Crews said salt isn't needed quite yet, because temperatures aren't cold enough and there isn't enough snow on the ground.

"Snowfall could overwhelm the magnesium chloride we have down already," said Quintana. "When the snow melts it would water down the magnesium, so we would definitely be switching over to plowing at that point and we'd be more reliant instead of prevention to snow removal; pushing it off the roads and getting out sand and salt to aide in traction."

But, no matter how hard this storm hits Ada County, ACHD says they're ready. Maintenance crews have been working around the clock since wet weather hit Wednesday afternoon, and plans to keep staffing 24 hour crews throughout this storm.

So far, people KBOI spoke with say they are happy with how crews handled clearing the roads Thursday morning, but know it's also up to the driver to say safe.

"I've lived here my whole life, but I've always just trusted that if there is snow," said Justeen, a Boise resident. "I do need to take caution when I drive, but I trust the crews will be out there taking care of the major streets and they'll be clear enough to drive."