CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – With Clarksville under an Ice Storm Warning from 6 p.m. today until 6 p.m. Thursday, the Clarksville Street Department has prepared equipment and personnel to battle the wintry mix if and when it arrives.
The National Weather Service is predicting temperatures here will fall below freezing around 9 p.m. tonight with a possible overnight accumulation of one-quarter to one-half inch of ice. Potential impacts include hazardous travel, power outages and tree damage.
Clarksville Street Department has fitted 24 dump trucks with salt boxes and crews are at the ready to begin coating streets and roads with rock salt and brine as needed. Crews are prepared with equipment and trucks to remove debris if ice causes trees and limbs to break and fall onto roadways.
“We have a full supply of salt on hand, around 11,000 tons, and we’re ready to go,” said Scott Bibb, the department’s Operations Supervisor.
Salt is stored at a supply depot on Franklin Street and at a Needmore Road facility in St. Bethlehem. Bibb said the predicted rain and relatively warm temperatures precluded the Street Department from salting streets in advance, because the rain would simply wash the salt off the pavement.
When ice and snow hit, the Clarksville Street Department focuses first on City thoroughfares and hilly areas, and then spreads its efforts to subdivisions and residential streets.
In Clarksville, most of the main roads -- Wilma Rudolph Boulevard, Madison Street and Fort Campbell Boulevard, for example -- are state highways, with ice and snow removal managed by Tennessee Department of Transportation. Regional TDOT equipment first deploys to clear Interstate 24 and then moves to the local state highways.
Clarksville Transit System will continue its regular route service for as long as possible, but if road conditions worsen, it will implement a “snow routes” plan, whereby buses avoid hilly areas and stay on the main roads. Riders should check www.rideCTS.com or the CTS Facebook page for updates.
The Clarksville-Montgomery County School System announced about 1:15 p.m. Wednesday that schools would suspend live instruction and use the system’s remote-learning-from-home option for all students on Thursday because of the forecast.