By Amy Wadas

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – It’s the time of year a lot of us dread, but we need to be prepared regardless.

PennDOT has been preparing for winter weather since this summer and is ready to go for Thursday’s potential freezing rain event.

“We are already on shifts in Allegheny County and that means that we have people that start at midnight and work until 8 a.m. We have people that start at 4 a.m. and work until noon. We have people that start at noon and they’ll work until 8 p.m. and again, that 4 p.m. to midnight shift,” said Angelo Pampena with PennDot District 11.

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On Wednesday, crews were already spraying brine on the roads.

“We can get residual salt there so that when that precipitation falls and hits the roadway, there’s going to be some salt that prevents it from bonding,” Pampena said.

Bridges and elevated areas typically freeze first, which means crews will be treating those areas multiple times through the day.

Officials recommend driving 20 mph under the speed limit and to be extra cautious during the morning rush.

Should it start snowing, crews will start plowing and will station trucks at various ramps throughout the county.

Officials are also reminding motorists to leave extra space for salt trucks.

Also, it’s a good idea to keep an emergency kit and blanket in your car in case you happen to get stuck and need to stay warm.