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WVDOH crews around the state actively treating roads during latest winter weather event

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – West Virginia Division of Highways (WVDOH) crews are actively treating roads around the state during the current winter weather event Friday, January 5, 2024, and ahead of expected winter weather this weekend.

Statewide, WVDOH has over 1,000 trucks mounted with plows with salt spreading capabilities. Each truck is assigned a driver for a 12-hour day shift and a 12-hour night shift so that a driver is on the roadway 24 hours a day.

“As always, we are prepared for any snowfall event,” said Joe Pack, P.E., WVDOH Chief Engineer of District Operations. “We attack each storm with the same level of importance of having every available truck on the road.”

WVDOH snowplow drivers are on the roadway as long as the snow is falling and then for the cleanup afterwards until the roads are deemed safe and passable.

The weather forecast for the upcoming weekend of Friday, January 5, 2024 through Sunday, January 7, 2024 calls for a wintry mix. Pack said WVDOH drivers use an increased amount of stone mixed with salt during a wintry mix weather event.

“As the abrasives are applied at a higher rate on the roadway, it does not allow the ice sheet to form a solid,” he explained. “It forms around that small rock and as the traffic drives over it, it cracks. The cracking allows the salt solution to penetrate the ice, melting it from underneath.” Statewide, the WVDOH has a stockpile of more than 231,000 tons of salt. A typical snowplow holds 12 tons of salt, enough to treat about 100 lane miles of road. That’s about a 50-mile stretch of two-lane road, or about 25 miles of four-lane.

WVDOH reminds motorists to slow down, give snowplow drivers space and never pass a truck during a winter weather event.

For the latest updates and information on travel conditions throughout West Virginia, visit wv511.org.

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