ODOT Suiting up, White Stripes and All
DELAWARE ( February 15, 2013) – (NEW) Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) garages throughout Central Ohio are preparing for the winter weather this weekend by applying a substance called brine on interstates, US and state routes.
You can tell if a roadway has been pre-treated because the brine leaves white stripes that resemble pin stripes on the surface. That residue is actually salt which is why brine is an effective weapon in ODOT’s fight against snow and ice especially on ramps and bridges.
Bridges are not insulated. Cold air can change the surface temperature of a bridge more quickly than a section of roadway that has dirt underneath it.
Black ice or frost occurs when the bridges surface temperature drops below freezing. As a result, a bridge could potentially have a thin layer of black ice or frost on it that the motorist cannot see.
If that brine has been applied to that bridge before the snow begins to fall, the salt residue prevents the bonding of the ice and snow to the surface.
That packed down snow is referred to “hard pack” and is a safety and economic concern because it can take ten times more salt to break up once it has formed.
“The main reason we use brine is to make the roads safer for the motoring public,” said Robert Lloyd, District 6 Highway Management Administrator. “Brine gives our winter maintenance crews an advantage when fighting a storm.”
District 6 also uses the latest in pavement sensor technology to predict winter road conditions and frost. Dozens of Road Weather Information Sensors (RWIS) across eight counties continually monitor pavement conditions.
When combined with information supplied by contracted meteorologists who analyze data from 180 RWIS stations statewide, it is possible to predict freezing conditions along with pavement sensitive forecasts.
No matter the technology or the pre-treatment, motorists must remember, In Ice and Snow, Take it Slow.
Note to Media: ODOT crews are pre-treating in Union, Pickaway and Madison Counties. The areas are interstates, state and US routes.
For more information contact:
Nancy Burton, District 6 Communications, at (614) 205-3131 or Breanna Watzka, District 6 Communications, at (740) 833-8222.