PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Preparations are already underway as a winter storm is tracking to our region.

Monday at the Peoria Public Works department it was the calm before the storm.

“We’re just in a wait-and-see type of mode of what mother nature is going to throw at us. We’re expecting the worst, hoping for the best,” said Nick McMillion, communications specialist with Peoria Public Works

Regardless of how severe the conditions may be road crews say they will be prepared.

“Our equipment’s ready, our guys are ready, they know their routes,” McMillion said.

In addition to making sure equipment is functioning properly, the Peoria Public Works Department has secured 500 tons of salt this month.

McMillion said as they create their game plan for the upcoming winter storm they will have to consider extreme temperatures and high winds.

“There are areas throughout the city that are affected by blowing and drifting snow so that routes we’ll have to keep in focus,” McMillion said. “As the temperatures drop, salt loses its effectiveness. So, you know, there’s a couple of things that are coming into play with this storm.”

The Peoria International Airport is also getting ready for a winter blast.

“We have the equivalent of 100 miles of county highway that’s packed into our 1300 acres. It’s a lot to keep that open,” said Gene Olson, director of airports with Peoria International Airport.

PIA uses a combination of snow brushes, plows, and blowers to keep runways clear during a storm, and checks are completed 2-3 times each hour.

Olson said airports use a 0-6 metric that determines the type and depth of snow and the goal is to keep that number above 2.

“We could work our hearts out to try to keep that runway good but if the conditions drop to 2 then the airlines are going to cancel,” Olson said.

McMillion said he encourages drivers to take their time this week and the public works department will focus on major roadways first.

Olson encourages travelers to sign up for your airline’s notification system, so they can stay updated on any delays or cancellations.