SOUTH BEND — With a new round of wicked winter weather ahead, another tough commute could be on the way Thursday. When roads begin to get covered by snow, call volume can triple or even quadruple within hours. That's why police are asking you to stay off the phone with them unless it's an emergency. On the eve of the 8th straight day of snow in Michiana, Gerardo Dominguez was filling up on a dose of prevention. "Because of the weather, they seem to go down in pressure," he said while filling his tires with air at a South Bend service station. "So, I'm trying to get ready for tomorrow and the rest of the week. The last thing you want to worry about is car problems, and I hear it's going to be pretty bad because we'll be getting a lot more snow." He wasn't alone in practicing a bit of extra preparation. At the Indiana State Police Toll Road Post, officers were preparing Thursday for an onslaught too. But this one sounded a bit more like a ringing phone. Make that, dozens of ringing phones. "Sometimes when we get bad weather, you almost could just hang the phone up and pick it right back up, and someone's on the line. We get that many calls," said Indiana State Police Sergeant Jeff Whiteman. The problem is, most of them aren't emergencies. Instead, callers ask about road conditions, weather reports, and some requests that boggle even veteran dispatchers. "They ask us to authorize them to let them not to go work. They want our names and badges and stuff like that. And, we don't have time for that in dispatch, unfortunately," Whiteman said. Neither do dispatchers in South Bend, who report another snowstorm phenomenon. "They'll call in and report slick intersections and suggest places where the city needs to put salt on the roads," said South Bend Police Captain Phil Trent. "And people will ask where the roads are slick, and what routes they should take. Our dispatchers report an increase in that when the weather gets bad, and unfortunately, they're not going to be able to provide much information as far as that's concerned." Dispatchers aren't relying on information from drivers to perform their jobs either. "We have officers out on the streets, and they know the traditional trouble spots. So, we're getting immediate feedback from our officers and transmitting that information to the street department," Trent said. The problem is, those types of calls into dispatch are tying up lines that would otherwise be used for emergency communication, or to help drivers stuck out on the roads who need emergency help. "It takes a lot of time away from the emergency calls we need to answer, because we don't have a dedicated line here in dispatch for road and weather information. So, if the phone rings, we answer it. We don't know if it's a weather call or an emergency. We have to handle all those calls as we get them," said Whiteman. If the caller is looking for information on road conditions, it's unlikely they'll get it. Dispatchers are now directing those callers to another number set up by Indiana's Department of Transportation or a new interactive INDOT website that updates road conditions across the state. The bottom line, they say? Let dispatchers do their jobs and leave the weather coverage to the pros. "We're not weathermen, we're police officers," laughed Whiteman. "We don't even have cable!" That's not to say you shouldn't call dispatchers if you are experiencing an emergency. If that's the case, officers urge you to call 911. For information on road conditions on state run roads and interstate highways, call 1-800-261-ROAD (7623) or click here For information on road conditions on county or city run streets, call your local street or highway department.