County reeling from rain prepares for possible snow

8:44 PM, Jan 16, 2013   |    comments
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In some parts of Cocke County, it's difficult to tell the river from the road.

The swollen Little Pigeon River flooded several low lying county roads making them impassable.

Not much Highway Superintendent Kenneth Ford and his crews can do about that.

But Wednesday they were out in full force carrying dump truck loads of gravel to damaged portions of Cocke County's 200 miles of gravel roads.

"When the water goes down well have a lot of work to do to clean up the mess," says Ford.

But first they need to deal with the possibility of snow.

They've already got most of their plows attached to the trucks.

"If it's a deep snow we can knock it off pretty good but if it's ice you cant' do much with it," says Ford.

The county doesn't have salt to deal with icy roads, instead Ford says they'll put down fine gravel.

They'll also have crews ready around the clock to deal with any downed trees or power lines.

He says so far their rain response has gone well.

"It's not as bad as it's been before," says Ford. "We just hope it doesn't snow."

As the Little Pigeon continues to recede, Ford says so far so good.

Wet roads are causing problems for road crews across East Tennessee.

Typically with snow and ice in the forecast, TDOT crews would have trucks out pre-treating problem areas with salt or bring.

But with all the water on the roads, TDOT Spokesman Mark Nagi says it would just be a waste of resources.

They'll have all hands on deck tomorrow night with crews in each of their 24 districts statewide.

Nagi says they'll also be ready to pool resources if areas like Cocke County need more assistance.

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