The National Weather Service says a mix of winter weather is expected Friday.

Updated at 8:07 a.m. Christmas Eve: A light mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain are expected to fall on the region today.

The National Weather Service said travel will likely be impacted, especially secondary roads, bridges and overpasses.

For Christmas Day, cold temperatures and patchly light snow and flurries are expected.

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Updated at 12:30 p.m.: With an increased number of travelers taking to the road for the holidays and the likelihood of a winter storm hitting the state late today and Friday, the Missouri Department of Transportation is urging motorists to monitor road conditions before heading out or, better yet, stay put if possible.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory for Texas County that begins tomorrow morning and continues through midnight.

MoDOT is keeping a close eye on the forecast and will send crews out to check road conditions before the bad weather hits. When the ice and snow start coming down, crews will be dispatched to treat and plow roads.

“We’ll be out on the roads in full force at the first sign of any winter precipitation, and we’ll work around the clock if we need to,” said Don Hillis, MoDOT’s director of system management.

Bridges and overpasses generally experience freezing conditions first. Drivers should use caution, pay extra attention and remember the following tips when driving in inclement weather:

· Slow down.

· Always wear your seat belt.

· Turn your headlights on. They help you see and help other drivers see you.

· Double the distance you normally leave between you and the next car.

· Use gentle pressure on your accelerator pedal when starting on wet or slick surfaces.

· Give snowplows plenty of room, and try not to pass them when conditions are poor.

· Watch for other vehicles having problems with road conditions.

· If you get stuck, stay in your vehicle.

· Know your route and always travel with a full tank of gas.

· Pack a winter travel safety kit.

· Make frequent rest stops.

Before traveling, motorists can log on to www.modot.org to view an online Traveler Information Map, which gives an updated view of weather-related road conditions for major Missouri highways. Travelers can also call MoDOT’s customer service center for road conditions at 888-ASK-MoDOT (888-275-6636). The toll-free phone line is answered 24-hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.

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With possible snow in the forecast throughout southern Missouri on Christmas Eve, MoDOT encourages motorists to plan ahead.

According to Maintenance Superintendent Dan Sherbo, a bit of planning can help make your travel smoother this season. “The main thing motorists can do when winter weather is approaching, is plan ahead, be patient with us and give us room to do our jobs,” said Sherbo. The simplest way to do this is to stay off the roadway when possible. This year, consider adjusting your travel instead of planning for traveling on Christmas Eve. Motorists can also check the Traveler Information Map for up-to-the-minute road conditions at http://www.modot.org/ .

Whenever the snow hits this season, MoDOT crews will be ready. “If we get winter weather on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, regardless, it’s like no other day. We know we have to get out and work on the roads – that’s what we do. We will have all our resources and all our folks available, whether it’s Christmas Eve or Christmas Day, and do our best to get those roads taken care of so everyone can enjoy the holiday,” said Sherbo.

The latest roadway information is available online at www.modot.org/southcentral, on Twitter at twitter.com/MoDOTSoCentral or on Facebook at facebook.com/modotsocentral .

 

 

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