Iowans prepare for weekend snow

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - Preparations for the snowfall were happening throughout Friday. The Iowa Department of Transportation put brine down on bridges and overpasses from the Cedar Rapids area and to the south.

It's not just the roads that are ready for snow. The DOT also has a new tool this year with blue and white lights on the back of its plows to increase visibility on the roads.

“We had a lot of plows being hit from the rear,” Transportation Planner Cathy Cutler said. “Or if they had their wing plow out, which is the side plow, people would try to pass, and they would hit that.”

The DOT also has temperature sensors on the road.

KCRG-TV9 First Alert Storm Team Meteorologists said temperatures are warm enough that brine and salt should be effective in helping keep roads clear. But some Iowans might want to check if their cars are also ready to go this weekend.

Albert Auto Service said the first thing to check is something that might seem odd — your cooling system.

Service Manager Jerrad Swestka said you'll need a good antifreeze to keep the system running.

Sweskta said you also need to make sure your tires are ready, and there's a quick way to tell if they're in good shape. “Use a penny. Stick it upside down, and if you can see the top of Lincoln's head, then you're basically needing tires,” Sweskta said.

Swestka also recommended keeping winter safety gear in your trunk if you get stranded, including an extra coat, blankets and snacks.