Freezing rain, drizzle, and sleet move through Illinois

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Lansing motorists should be prepared for hazardous driving conditions Sunday evening into Monday morning

News release from Illinois Department of Transportation

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (January 7, 2018) – The Illinois Department of Transportation advised the public that a combination of freezing rain, drizzle, and sleet would impact travel throughout Sunday and during the overnight hours.

The National Weather Service forecasted a mix of light snow, sleet, and freezing rain starting Sunday morning, primarily in the central and southern regions of the state. Freezing drizzle was anticipated to arrive in northern Illinois Sunday afternoon and evening. Coupled with very cold pavement conditions due to recent subzero temperatures, roads have become hazardous.

“If you are going to be traveling, you should first ask yourself if your trip is necessary before heading out,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “We are working hard to make our roads safe and passable, but conditions are expected to be challenging. We are asking the public to please plan ahead, slow down and expect much longer than usual travel times.”

Throughout the state, whenever possible, IDOT crews today have been pretreating bridges, overpasses and ramps, the areas most susceptible to icing. The department will have available more than 1,700 trucks and equipment statewide, applying salt and treating roads.

Motorists should expect slick roadways and be extra cautious when driving. For regular updates on statewide road conditions, visit www.gettingaroundillinois.com. Motorists can also follow IDOT on Facebook and Twitter.

Travel advice for hazardous conditions

  • Take it slow, especially when approaching intersections, ramps, bridges, and shady areas. All are prone to black ice, an invisible danger during some winter storms.
  • Make sure your gas tank is full.
  • Keep a cellphone, warm clothes, blankets, food, water, a first aid kit, washer fluid, and an ice scraper in your vehicle.
  • If you have to make a trip, check the forecast and make sure someone is aware of your travel route and schedule.
  • Carry a cell phone and dial *999 in the Chicago area for roadway assistance in case of emergency. Reminder: Using handheld phones while driving is illegal in Illinois, unless it is an emergency situation.
  • Always wear a seat belt, whether you’re sitting in the front seat or back seat. It’s the law.