AUSTIN, Texas — As more winter weather begins to move through Texas, road conditions continue to worsen.
The biggest piece of advice is for drivers to stay off the roads, but for some, that is not possible. That's why tow operators and TxDOT crews are preparing themselves and the roads for what's to come.
"We see cars in ditches, cars off the roads upside down," said Jimmy Matyas with Quick Tow in Austin.
Matyas said he stays busy during winter weather in Central Texas.
"Cars siding way off the roadway. I mean, you get them 30 or 40 feet off the road because they can't, they can't stop. There's no traction and they just go," Matyas said.
TxDOT officials like Brad Wheelis say they're ready. He noted that the department has had crews already out on the roads since Sunday, making sure the roads are pre-treated and ready for what's to come. Crews will keep an eye on things to help make sure roads are at least passable.
"Passable does not mean perfect, and if you can stay home and avoid getting on the roadways, do so," Wheelis said.
Wheelis said TxDOT's work won't stop until this is done.
"We think we're going to get hit with this storm. So we will be out there retreating roadways as necessary, and then we will move to a granular substance that will melt any ice that is formed," Wheelis said.
Maytas knows accidents still happen, but a tow truck driver's own safety is crucial.
"Every six days, an operative is killed on the side of the highway, just from negligent driving when they don't slow down or move over and they're going at high speeds," Matyas said.
So if you must drive, remember some important tips.
"Just ease on your brakes, feather it, don't slam on the brakes, because that's where you will slide causing accidents," Matyas said.
Austin's Transportation Department says to pack a kit with things like chargers, jumper cables and flashlights, in case of an emergency.