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News Item #1027
[Commonwealth of Kentucky]
Highway Crews Prepare for Winter Weather
Posted: 22-Dec-2004 9:17PM CST

The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet began preparing for winter weather long before today’s winter storm. The cabinet’s Division of Highway has established a three tiered system for removing snow and ice from the state’s highways. Priority A routes—which include the state’s interstates, parkways, and major corridors—will be cleared first. After the Priority A routes are all cleared, work will move to the Priority B routes—important secondary routes. And finally all remaining state roads—Priority C routes—will be cleared.

The transportation cabinet has produced maps showing the snow and ice removal priority of state highways [Outside Link].

Up-to-date travel information for the state’s highways can be found at www.511.ky.gov [Outside Link]. You can also dial 511 from any cell phone to obtain road condition information.

It is up to local municipalities to remove snow from city and county streets and roads.

More information: (Hopkinsville) Kentucky New Era: Highway officials prepare for snow (Dec. 11, 2004) [Outside Link], Kentucky Transportation Cabinet: Kentucky Transportation Cabinet's Snow & Ice Team Is Ready for Winter Weather (Dec. 13, 2004) [Outside Link], KYTC Division of Highways District 12: State highway workers in District 12 ready for winter weather, snow and ice removal (Dec. 13, 2004) [Outside Link], Cincinnati Enquirer: First snowfall is a deadly one (Dec. 14, 2004) [Outside Link], Associated Press: Road crews prepare to fight snow (Dec. 16, 2004) [Outside Link], Associated Press: Below-zero cold blast drops 4 inches of snow (Dec. 21, 2004) [Outside Link], Kentucky Transportation Cabinet: Winter Driving Safety (Dec. 21, 2004)

Kentucky Transportation Cabinet District 3 press release:
KYTC District #3 Prepares for Old Man Winter
BOWLING GREEN, KY (December 21, 2004) - With the first major snowfall of the season upon us, Todd Morrison, Operations Branch Manager for the Department of Highways, encourages people to stay home if at all possible during inclement weather.
"If you can't stay home, give yourself plenty of time to get where you need to go," stated Morrison. Morrison continued, "We ask the public to be as patient as possible during snow removal. Roadways are cleared based on traffic usage, with the more traveled roadways cleared first." Morrison also reminds motorists to watch their speed with the possibility of slick spots, especially around overpasses and bridges.
Highways are grouped into A, B, and C categories with A routes being interstates and parkways. Once the A and B routes are cleared, crews can then move onto the C routes. Crews have already started to prepare for the storm throughout the district by spreading salt brine, an anti-icing agent that prevents the bond of frozen precipitation to the road surface. Even before the snow hits, district personnel are on call 24 hours a day from November 16 to March 15 in preparation of the snow and ice season.
The Cabinet encourages motorists to "Drive Smart" this winter, especially around snowplows. Driving tips and roadway conditions are available on the Cabinet's web site at www.transportation.ky.gov [Outside Link] under 'traveler information' or motorists can call 511 to get the most up to date information for interstates, parkways and major routes.

KYTC District 10 press release:
District 10 Highway Crews Ready For Approaching Storm
JACKSON, KY - (Dec. 21, 2004) -- As the National Weather Service continues to track an approaching storm that could bring a mixed bag of weather to east-central and eastern Kentucky, the personnel at the Department of Highways District 10 are ready to move.
"All our counties have been made aware of the possibility of some unpredictable winter weather for the next couple of days. I can assure you we will be and are prepared," said Billy Montgomery, administrative manager for District 10.
Montgomery is one of the District 10 supervisors on standby as the storm moves toward the Bluegrass State. A former maintenance engineer who was previously responsible for overseeing operations in some of District 10's counties, he knows what's required when a storm of significant magnitude bears down on Kentucky.
District 10 personnel are preparing for everything from heavy snow to an ice storm to flooding rain. The weather service has still not pinpointed the exact track a strong low pressure system will take as it moves from southwest to northeast and interacts with a strong cold front moving southeast from Canada. The path of the low will determine what type of precipitation the area gets.
Having already gotten something of a practice run in earlier this week, when a couple of inches of snow fell in spots across District 10, the snow removal crews are ready to spring into action when needed. Snowplows and salt spreaders were installed on trucks many weeks ago, the equipment has been tested, and duty rosters have been set so highway crews in the district's counties know when they'll be on call.
"It's our goal to keep the highways as safe as possible should we get a significant winter storm," said Linda Wagner-Justice, acting chief district engineer for District 10. "Our workers do an exceptional job anytime they're called upon to clear the roads. They'll be ready to do their duty should their services be needed."
Information on road conditions on major routes within the district is available by calling the 511 traffic and travel information system. Motorists are urged to use caution when driving on icy or snow-covered roads, if they must travel at all, and to wear their seat belts.
District 10 consists of Breathitt, Estill, Lee, Magoffin, Menifee, Morgan, Owsley, Perry, Powell and Wolfe counties.

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Updated: 22-Dec-2004 9:17PM CST

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