BENTON COUNTY (KFSM) - Last year, Northwest Arkansas got about 18 inches of snow- 11 inches more than the average. The road conditions across the region led to many school cancellations and frustrated drivers.
This year, officials with the Benton County Road Department said they're getting ahead of the game. Over the last two weeks, crews have checked their fleet of plows and salt trucks to make sure they're serviced and operational.
"Everything is good to go, we've checked our sand sheds to make sure they're full, all of our salt is full, all of our equipment is ready to go and we've got our crews on standby," Director Jeff Clark said.
Clark said they have up to 30 people who will be on call in case the weather turns bad this weekend. He said he will also have workers out on the roads looking for problem areas.
"We're going to do a lot more pretreating this year, we're on top of things, we believe we are ready to do whatever comes our way this year," Clark said.
The director said he's confident the county will be taken care of, but said his department doesn't have any control over city or state roads. The picture below circulated social media in March showing the difference between U.S. 71 on the Missouri and Arkansas sides.
"Everybody was talking about how good of a job Missouri did, and a lot of people were upset that we were having such a difficult time getting around and their roads were clear, but I do feel like they will be more on top of it this year," Pamela Bradley, a Rogers resident, said.
Bella Vista resident Doug Nelson said he is cautiously optimistic that the roads will be better this winter. He said he has heard that the county is prepared.
"They claim they are, so we'll wait and see," Nelson said.
Clark said if the roads begin to get slick, the first areas they will be treating are hills and intersections. He said right now, none of the roads have been pre-treated. He said he is going to watch the weather and make the call if necessary.