Anti-icing: a light application of this
liquid is applied to the road before a storm to prevent
a hard bond of ice, reduce snow buildup and speed snow
and ice breakup after a storm.
De-icing: a liquid or solid is applied
to remove a thin layer of snow or ice already on the
road. It can be very effective for melting black ice
and freezing rain.
Pre-wetting: wetting the traditional
cinder material with anti-icing or de-icing chemicals
to cause cinders to stick to snow better. Keeping cinders
on the road is nearly impossible in some circumstances,
especially in very cold weather and in cases where
there's traffic at highway speeds. Magnesium chloride
can keep cinders from blowing to the shoulder of the
Safe and Environmentally Friendly
Less toxic than baking soda or salt, the use of anti-icing chemicals is very
safe. Unlike cinders, it won't crack your windshield or chip your car's paint.
Tests have shown that the proper application of anti-icing chemicals produces
no negative effects on ground water, surface water or vegetation.
You should wash your car on a regular basis if you
drive on roads where anti-icing chemicals are used.
These chemicals (along with slush and dirt) can splash
your car and build up after a time, leaving a filmy
residue on your vehicle. Make car washing a part of
your regular maintenance routine, and you'll help keep
residue from the winter roads off your car.
Why not use cinders?
In many cases anti-icing chemicals work better than cinders. It keeps snow
from firmly sticking to the pavement. De-icing chemicals also last longer
than cinders and work in a broader range of conditions. Cinders can be crushed
by traffic and produce airborne dust, which contributes to pollution and
health concerns. Because cinders are easily blown off roadways by traffic,
it requires repeated applications.
The use of anti-icing chemicals is usually the most cost-effective alternative
when considering the whole picture. By breaking the bond between the pavement
and ice or snow, less effort is required for snowplows to get back to bare
pavement. This in turn, saves money on overtime, equipment costs and materials
used in winter maintenance.
Other ADOT Involvement
ADOT considers that the forecast of difficult driving conditions caused by
snow and/or ice warrant immediate response and work by its highway maintenance
forces to mitigate these driving conditions until improving weather returns
driving conditions to normal. The goal of this work is to enable a reasonable
and prudent driver to safely travel the highway. Work may be continuous or
intermittent depending on the type of highway, nature of the storm, and the
availability and condition of equipment and personnel.
Priority in allocation of snow and ice control
resources for ADOT:
- Interstate highways, freeways, and other highways
carrying 3500 ADT (Average Daily Traffic).
- Highways carrying 1000 to 3500 ADT.
- Highways carrying less than 1000 ADT.
- Highways that are closed for the winter season.
In addition to these priority routes, ADOT maintenance
personnel work in 12-hour shifts during winter storms
and anti-icing or de-icing chemicals are used on all
routes with the potential for snow and ice.
ADOT recommends that motorists wash both the body
and underside of their cars frequently during the winter.
This will minimize corrosion.