SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) is alerting motorists that travel may be impacted by freezing rain and sleet today through Sunday.

The National Weather Service is expecting ice to accumulate in many areas of Illinois, particularly the southern half of the state, starting Friday morning. Ice accumulation of at least 0.25 inches is forecast in the southwestern part of the state, creating hazardous driving conditions.

“Whenever a winter storm is forecast, you should ask yourself if your trip is necessary before heading out,” said Illinois Transportation Secretary Randy Blankenhorn. “We will be out making sure the roads are as safe as possible, but icy conditions may make roads slick this weekend. Give our crews plenty of room to work and please slow down if you will be driving.”

Crews have been pretreating bridges, overpasses and ramps – the areas most susceptible to icing – in advance of the expected freezing rain and sleet. More than 3,700 employees and 1,700 trucks will be available statewide to battle the winter storm this weekend, applying salt where needed.

If you have to travel:

  • Leave plenty of extra time to get to your destination.
  • Take it slow, especially when approaching intersections, ramps, bridges, and shady areas.
  • Make sure your gas tank is full.
  • Keep a cell phone, warm clothes, blankets, food, water, a first aid kit, washer fluid, and an ice scraper in your vehicle.

Check the forecast and make sure someone is aware of your travel route and schedule.
Always wear a seat belt, whether you’re sitting in the front seat or back seat. It’s the law.
Visit www.gettingaroundillinois.com and follow IDOT on Facebook and Twitter for road condition updates.