Columbia, SC (WLTX) – Crews with the South Carolina Department of Transportation are prepping for the possible impact Hurricane Irma could have in South Carolina.
“We are fueling our vehicles, making sure everything is topped off,” Alan Kozusko with SCDOT explained.
Kozusko said crews are finishing up scheduled maintenance operations to make ensure that there are no open work zones or holes in the road when the rain comes.
DOT is also checking ditches, drainage devices and shoulders to make sure they can collect as much as they can handle.
Crews from all over the state are loading trucks with cones, barrels, barricades, signs for the expected lane reversals on Saturday.
The DOT engineer said they are monitoring the roadways with the increased traffic of evacuees from Georgia and Florida which is something Lance Corporal David Jones with the Highway State Patrol says everyone needs to be mindful of.
“We’re going to have troopers from all over the state congregate to the coast of South Carolina,” Jones said. “We want you to do the right thing go ahead and get prepared, make sure your car is full of gas, make sure your cell phone battery’s charged, and make sure you have a plan in place and that your family knows that plan in place.”
“We’re anticipating a similar event to Matthew,” Kozusko said.
They are also thinking about the aftermath, working with energy companies to ensure they can get the roadways clear if power lines fall.
“Step two is to deal with the after effects of the storm. All of my counties are geared up for doing that,” Kozusko said. “Geared up for handling all the debris, and just to keep the roads open and clear and availability for emergency vehicles and just anything we can do to help keep them open.”
Jones said you should expect to see more state troopers out on the roadways over the next few days.
Governor Henry McMaster may call for a lane reversal on I-26 all the way from Charleston to I-77 in Columbia 10 a.m. Saturday.
Folks are asked to download the 511 South Carolina Traffic app on your mobile device.