Staff Report GDTnews@civitasmedia.com
November 3, 2013
OHIO VALLEY — The Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) is on-call to respond to all types of weather conditions and with winter around the corner ODOT is making sure all snow fighting equipment is ready to go.
“Unfortunately, we never know what Mother Nature is going to throw at us,” said ODOT Director Jerry Wray. “The best we can do is be prepared for everything, all the time.”
Over the past week, ODOT District 10, which includes Gallia and Meigs counties, has conducted point inspections to repair snow removal equipment as part of county-by-county Equipment Readiness Inspections. District 10 has inspected, tested and fine-tuned a total of 126 snowplows throughout southeast Ohio.
“Snow and ice removal is one of our core services and is vital to keeping motorists safe and our economy running each winter,” said ODOT District 10 Deputy Director T. Steve Williams. “Our county workforce does a great job to ensure the equipment is fully operational and ready to plow the roads.”
Since making their debut last winter, ODOT has continued adding green and white lights to its existing amber lights. The department has completed the upgrade on 70 percent of its fleet. All trucks will have the green, white and amber color combinations by the end of this year. Better visibility will lead to safer roadways as the motoring public can quickly and easily identify these vehicles in adverse weather conditions.
Statewide ODOT will have more than 1,700 plow trucks and more than 3,000 trained drivers ready to clear ice and snow from the state’s roadways and bridges. ODOT maintains nearly 43,000 lane miles of state highway, which carries approximately two-thirds of the state’s daily traffic.
With user-friendly, map-based features, visitors to www.ohgo.com can access real-time traffic information, winter road conditions and closures across the state.
Last year, ODOT became the first state department of transportation to ever win the American Public Works Association (APWA) Excellence in Snow and Ice Control Award. The APWA Excellence in Snow and Ice Control award recognizes those organizations who promote excellence in the management, administration and best practices in snow and ice removal, while minimizing environmental impacts.