SCOTTSBORO, Ala. (WHNT) -The single degree separating water and ice can also separate life and death.
Lt. Scott Matthews of the Scottsboro Police Department notes, "It doesn't take but just a second to get on top of something that's not clear, and then you're spinning sideways. so you know, be careful out here."
Scottsboro Police know they'll have to deal with a few slippery mishaps over the next few days. But when it gets serious, first responders need to get there as quickly as possible.
That starts with how they get dispatched.
"People still want to call 911 and get road conditions," says Matthews, "'Is this highway open? Is this road open? How are the roads between here in Huntsville?' That's not what 911 is for."
Police and other first responders deal with the elements just like the rest of us. They already lose minutes with the weather, they can't afford to lose any more.
Matthews adds, "We can't respond as quick with conditions how they are, with the roads the way they are. So it is going to take a little longer. And we don't want to have our 911 operators tied up, talking to somebody about road conditions or whether or not a business is open or closed, that's just not the purpose."