Road crews from the Elizabethton Street Department, the Carter County Highway Department and the Tennessee Department of Transportation were quick to get the roads cleared, and by Monday afternoon most roads were clear.
As usual, the roads at the highest elevations in the county were the hardest to clear. Shannon Burchett, assistant superintendent of the county department, said crews were out several times in the past few days, struggling with new snow and old black ice.
“They worked six hours on Friday on the black ice,” Burchett said. “They were out another four hours on Saturday.” He said most of the frozen spots were in the Burbank, Cove Creek and Hughes Gap areas of Roan Mountain.
After a new storm dumped fresh snow on the roads and highways, Burchett said the crews got an early start Monday morning. The crews began at 5 a.m., working to clear the roads throughout the county. Once the roads were clear and a bright sun melted icy spots at the lower elevations, all crews concentrated once again on the higher elevations.
All roads in the county are open, but that doesn’t mean they are all clear.
“Most of the snow is being cut off, but from from Hampton on up there are still some areas,” Burchett said. The crews have spread snow and chat in the stubborn areas, but the temperatures at high elevations are so cold that the road mixture does not have a lot of impact on frozen spots in the shade.”
The story was mostly the same for much of the county, Tennessee Department of Transportation community relations officer Mark Nagi said. Nagi said that no major weather-related issues were reported Monday and that roads appeared clear for the day.
The road condition report reported no crashes or other weather-related incidents as road crews worked overnight and through the day to salt and treat the roads. Unicoi County, Johnson County and Carter County schools will all be closed Tuesday.
The weather conditions should provide the crews with help today, as temperatures at higher elevations are expected to reach 50 degrees and tonight’s lows are expected to remain above freezing.
Press staff writer Jessica Fuller contributed to this story.