Yakima County crews prepare for icy roads

Yakima County crews prepare for icy roads »Play Video
YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash. -- Yakima County is gearing up for winter. There's no snow in the forecast, but that hasn't stopped workers from dropping chemicals on the streets.

Snowy and icy roads, you know they're coming. So do the people responsible for keeping the streets safe.

"In a lot of shaded areas, you have heavy frost and ice that doesn't melt and they'll be on a clear piece of road and they may not be aware of it being icy," said Yakima County Roads Technician Kevin Wangler.

Even though snow isn't in the forecast, crews are covering 50 miles in Yakima County with anti-ice chemicals. Drivers said it's needed.

"They do help with this compact snow and ice and not sliding off the roads so bad and the ice is what gets real bad underneath that snow,” said Durae Padilla. “That's what gets slick."

The chemicals help lower road temperatures so frost doesn't stick on the pavement. Engineers said the chemicals only need to be spread again when frost creeps onto the streets. Otherwise, the chemicals should last unless it rains or snows.

Streets Sunnyside, Mabton, Terrace Heights, Naches, Selah and West Valley have been covered. Durae Padilla knows what it's like during winter.

"Have you seen accidents before?" KIMA asked.
“Oh yeah," said Durae.
"What do you see?" KIMA asked.
"People sliding off the roads getting stuck on the side," said Durae.

"If we don't do it, there's a lot like South Naches where there's curves along the river,” said Kevin. “There's a lot of accidents there."

The Yakima County Roads Department also said the chemicals make it easier to plow when it snows.