OHIO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
DISTRICT 11 OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS - 2201 Reiser Avenue SE, New Philadelphia, OH 44663
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Don’t Crowd the Plow: ODOT Reminds Motorists to Give Snow Plows Room to Work
Winter weather forecast to impact northeast and east-central Ohio this weekend
NEW PHILADELPHIA, OHIO (January 9, 2009) --With a Winter Storm Warning in effect for most of northeast and east-central Ohio until late Saturday night predicting snowfall accumulations of up to eight inches, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) District 11 is reminding motorists to give snow plows room to work.
ODOT District 11 Deputy Director Dick Bible, P.E., said, "Weather forecasters are predicting heavy snow to come into our region after midnight tonight through late Saturday with also the potential for some freezing rain and sleet and even plain rain for other areas, especially south of Interstate 70 which may be the dividing line between wintry and wet precipitation."
In District 11, as many as 120 snowplow trucks and over 200 drivers will be on state, U.S. and interstate routes at any given time this weekend. The equipment is large and slow-moving, and operators must contend with limited visibility.
Last winter, four fatalities resulted in the state from motorists hitting ODOT snowplow trucks.
ODOT safety experts urge motorists to stay clear of snowplows and graders by using the following tips:
· Distance – Give snowplows and graders room to work. Don’t tailgate and try not to pass. If you must pass, take extreme caution and beware of the snow cloud. Also slow down for oncoming snowplows; snowplows plow far and wide – sometimes very wide.
· Speed – Snowplows and graders travel below the posted speed limit. Be patient. Ice and Snow…Take it Slow.
· Vision – A snowplow or grader operator’s field of vision is restricted. You may see them, but they don’t always see you. Keep your distance and watch for sudden stops.
"Forecasters have also suggested blowing and drifting snow may be likely on Saturday night which also reduces visibility and can cause travel conditions to change from mile to mile, so remember, Ice and snow… take it slow," said Bible.
No matter what time of day or night, motorists can learn up-to-date traffic information and 24-hour road conditions at www.buckeyetraffic.org.
For more information, contact: Becky McCarty, Public Information Officer, at 330-308-3949 or at Becky.McCarty@dot.state.oh.us.
ODOT District 11 serves Belmont, Carroll, Columbiana, Harrison, Holmes, Jefferson and Tuscarawas counties.
ODOT is an Equal Opportunity Employer.