News

CDOT Set to Battle Weekend Driving Conditions

February 20, 2015 - Southeastern Colorado/CDOT Region 2 - Ice & Snow, Take it Slow!

COLORADO SPRINGS – Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) maintenance crews are set to combat this weekend’s snowstorm throughout southeastern and south-central Colorado. 

“Our employees will be working around the clock to help keep our highways safe and clear as much as possible,” said CDOT Maintenance Superintendent Adam Padilla.  “To ensure our plow drivers can do their job, we need the help of the traveling public to give our plows room and to drive appropriately for conditions.”

A total of 151 snowplows will be deployed throughout southeastern Colorado, distributed as follows:

Pueblo Maintenance Area

Currently on Snow Shift (Crews alternate 12 hours on/12 hours off) 35 snowplows on duty.

Colorado Springs Maintenance Area

Snow Shift begins at 8 p.m. Friday.  32 snowplows on duty.

La Junta Maintenance Area

Snow Shift begins at 8 p.m.  17 snowplows on duty.                   

Trinidad Maintenance Area

Currently on Snow Shift.  19 snowplows on duty.

Lamar Maintenance Area

Snow Shift begins at midnight.  22 snowplows on duty.

Fairplay Maintenance Area

Currently on Snow Shift.  23 snowplows on duty.

“The Fairplay area could be a concern if the winds kick up.  Visibility can be notoriously bad through South Park when it’s windy and can lead to road closures to maintain public safety,” added Padilla.  But anywhere along the Front Range and I-25 corridor and southeastern plains could be problem areas as well if we get a combination of snow and wind.”

WINTER TRAVEL TIPS:

Ø  Log on to CDOT’s Winter Driving web page at: http://www.codot.info/travel/winter-driving for road conditions winter driving tips and other information; or for I-70 West Mountain Corridor travel, go here: http://goi70.com/.

Ø  Be sure you have good snow tires. How do you know if you need new snow tires? Insert a quarter into the tire tread upside down, with Washington’s head going in first; if the top of George’s head is covered by the tread, your tires are OK (do this test in multiple points around each tire.) If the top of his head is visible at any point, you need new tires.

Ø  Always keep the top half of your gas tank full. It can give you better traction and gives you a bigger margin of error if you get stuck and have to keep the engine running periodically to keep warm.

Ø  If you are stuck in a serious storm do not leave your car. Run the engine periodically and wait for help.

Ø  Carry blankets, water, a flashlight, a shovel, some nutrition bars or other food for sustenance. Winterize your vehicle's safety kit by including extra blankets, sand to help gain traction in the event you become stuck on ice or snow, jumper cables, an ice scraper and lock deicer.

Ø  Remember that 4-wheel drive does not mean 4-wheel stop. A 4-wheel drive vehicle will not stop any better in icy conditions, especially if you have inadequate snow tires.

Ø  Know the chain laws. Chain restrictions in Colorado are most often put into effect for commercial vehicles (semi-trailer trucks) and do not usually affect passenger vehicles.

Ø  Drive for the conditions. In poor visibility or even whiteout conditions, don't drive faster than you can see ahead. High speeds in poor or no visibility can lead to large chain reaction accidents.

Ø  In addition to these winter driving tips, CDOT reminds all motorists to respect winter weather, conduct a pre-trip inspection of your vehicle, and leave extra space between your automobile and others on the road (including plow trucks). Of course, always buckle up! 

Colorado: The Official State Web Portal