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ODOT Warns of Snow Left on Highways


LIMA (February 10, 2011) – ODOT is issuing what has become an annual warning to residents living on state highways: Don’t leave snow plowed from private driveways on the highways.

“Not only is it not advisable to leave snow from your driveway in the middle of the highway, it is against the law,” said Kirk Slusher, Ohio Department of Transportation District 1 deputy director.

Ohio Revised Code 4511.74 prohibits the placement of injurious material on a highway except that which is placed on the roadway by a proper authority, such as the salt or grit which ODOT uses to treat icy roads.

Placing anything on the highway could be dangerous to motorists in that they may hit these obstructions and lose control of their vehicle. “If it is found that snow displaced from a private drive onto a highway contributes to an accident, the individual who placed it there could be found liable,” said Slusher.

According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, the offense is considered a first degree misdemeanor and carries a maximum penalty of six months in jail and a $1,000 fine.

ODOT advises snow from private drives be pushed completely off the highway. It is recommended that residents place the snow on the far side of their drives so that a passing ODOT plow will not throw the snow back into the driveway, said Slusher.

In addition, the department recommends individuals clear snow away from their mailboxes. “Moving snow to the far side of the mailbox may reduce the likelihood that snow thrown from a passing plow will cause damage,” said Slusher.

ODOT also reminds parents to keep their children from playing in piles of snow which are close to the road.

District One serves the counties of Allen, Defiance, Hancock, Hardin, Paulding, Putnam, Van Wert and Wyandot.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rhonda Pees, ODOT District One, 419-999-6803.

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For more information contact:
Rhonda Pees, Public Information Officer, at (419) 999-6803
or email D01.PIO@dot.state.oh.us