CLARKSTON (WWJ) – The warmer weather may be great on the paved roads, but it’s causing headaches on the gravel roads of northern Oakland County. Frost under the gravel is turning the snow into ice and the roads into skating rinks.
Craig Bryson, with the Road Commission for Oakland County, said salt doesn’t work on gravel roads, and the rain has already thwarted their backup plan.
“Generally, the only thing we can do on the gravel roads is spread some sand, but when we’ve got rain, the rain just washes away the sand, so we’re hoping the rain gives us a break and we can get out and do some more sanding,” Bryson said. Unfortunately, in the meantime, there isn’t a whole lot we can do on those gravel roads.”
Northern Oakland County has more than 700 miles of gravel roads. Bryson said all they can do now is wait for it to warm up.
WWJ Newsradio 950’s Ron Dewey reported that those who don’t often drive in that area were being caught off guard Monday morning.
Ashley Falkner, who works for a transportation service, was having a rough time trying to get up a small hill to her client’s house.
“I’m gonna try and go straight ahead and curve around the other way,” said Falkner, adding that she was startled to encounter the unexpected ice.
Dewey found Debbie Rice inching her way along Hadley Road outside Clarkston. Was she surprised?
“I was because the main roads seem fine, so this dirt road seems bad. This was my second attempt the opposite way of trying to get down to the street,
“Take it easy today on these back roads … I saw a few people actually sliding sideways,” she said.
North Oakland school districts decided not to chance it with their buses and called classes for the day.
The rain is expected to return for a bit Monday afternoon before turning to snow in the evening. “If we’re lucky, we may be able to get through the bulk of rush hour before it freezes,” said WWJ-TV forecaster Jill Washburn.