The Wyoming Department of Transportation is urging the public to be prepared and plan ahead if they travel this weekend during the forecasted winter storm.
The storm is expected to impact several parts of the state, with snowfall amounts ranging from 6-plus inches to up to 18 inches of snow with strong, gusty winds.
The bulk of the storm is expected to affect Wyoming Saturday through Monday. Forecasts indicate the storm will first move into southern Wyoming and impact interstates 80 and 25 and could potentially move into the northern part of the state and impact Interstate 90.
WYDOT will be prepared to maintain and plow the roads. Crews are preparing snow plows and getting materials ready for the upcoming storm.
“At WYDOT we’re proud of the fact that we are always ready for the next storm,” said WYDOT Director K. Luke Reiner. “As with any storms that come our way, our crews work to ensure our equipment is in good, working condition. We stand ready to handle whatever comes our way so we can continue to provide a safe and effective transportation system for the people of Wyoming.”
During the winter months, WYDOT’s maintenance crews always make sure the plow trucks, blades and other equipment are operational. Before any storm, crews review all equipment and get snow control materials, such as salt and sand used to provide traction and reduce icy conditions, ready for application.
Drivers can also do their part to ensure their safety whenever they travel during wintry conditions.
Before heading out, motorists should check WYDOT’s 511 website at wyoroad.info to see the latest road and travel conditions. The website also provides road-alert information such as closures.
Additionally, motorists should always check their tires before heading out, make sure they have a full tank of gas, carry an emergency kit and let someone know their travel plans.
When driving on snowy and slick roads, motorists should accelerate and decelerate slowly so they have more control over their vehicles, increase following distance and not use cruise control. No matter what the conditions are, motorists should always wear their seat belts.
If a motorist gets into an accident, they should call 911 from their cell phone and remain in their vehicle until emergency crews arrive.
WYDOT also wants to remind motorists to be cautious when driving near snow plows. Plows create a large cloud of snow, making it difficult to see and safely pass the snow removal equipment.
“Our plows are out there maintaining the roads to help keep traffic moving,” Reiner said. “We urge everyone to pay attention when they are driving to prevent any more collisions.”
So far, there have been 17 snowplows hit by other vehicles this winter season. A winter season typically started in October and lasts until May. Last winter season there were 23 plows hit.