A sudden burst of winter weather is keeping the Ohio Department of Transportation on its toes, and more could be on the way.
ODOT Transportation Manager for Muskingum County Raymond Dailey said crews were not expecting temperatures to dip into single digits overnight, which makes salt less efficient on the roadways. Dailey said ODOT was still able to clean up the mess before the morning traffic rush, but now he’s already looking ahead to the next obstacle – ice.
"Ice is a lot more of a challenge to deal with than regular snow," said Dailey. "With snow, the drivers can see it, and they know the roads are covered and slippery, but with ice, a lot of times they do not realize that they’re traveling on ice, so traffic tends to make a lot more mistakes."
Dailey said he advises drivers to slow down and give trucks plenty of room on the roadways. He said ODOT works closely with surrounding sheriff’s departments, the State Highway Patrol and county engineers to deal with the most dangerous areas first.
"We have to get out right before the ice hits to try to get salt on the highway to prevent the ice from actually bonding to the pavement," said Dailey. "Once the ice is completely bonded, it takes a lot more equipment, materials and people power."