With forecasts predicting the possibility of freezing rain or sleet Thursday night and Friday morning in parts of the Coastal Bend, the Texas Department of Transportation’s (TxDOT) Corpus Christi District is prepared to respond immediately to icy conditions.

Crews throughout the 10-county district were making preparations Wednesday, checking trucks, spreading equipment and stockpiles of traction and de-icing material. Personnel at all maintenance offices were notified to be available in the event icy weather develops and to be prepared to be deployed as needed with appropriate equipment.

“TxDOT is prepared to respond to reports of icy roads throughout the Coastal Bend. Crews are on alert and equipment is ready. In addition to monitoring road and weather conditions, TxDOT crews will pay special attention to bridges and overpasses, which typically are the first to ice over. If icy conditions develop, motorists are urged to make only necessary trips,” said Corpus Christi District Engineer Lonnie Gregorcyk, P.E.

On Wednesday, the National Weather Service advised that any freezing rain or sleet would likely be short-lived in south Texas, with the main issue travel conditions Thursday night into Friday. Temperatures are predicted to rise significantly by Friday afternoon.

TxDOT offers these winter driving safety tips: Reduce speed and do not use cruise control on wet or icy roads. Speed limits are based on normal road and weather conditions, not winter road conditions; Maintain at least three times the normal following distance on snow or ice; Use extra caution on bridges, ramps, overpasses and shaded areas as they tend to freeze first; If you start to slide, ease off the gas pedal or brakes. Steer where you want the vehicle to go; Only make necessary trips. Do not drive at all, if possible.

Road conditions throughout the state will be updated frequently at www.drivetexas.org.