KDOT workers fight icy roads

KDOT workers fight icy roads
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A winter day across Kansas brings with it freezing temperatures and plenty of ice. For drivers like Trish Katzer, it’s a bit of an inconvenience.

“It’s really cold, very cold and all the cars are frozen over and it takes a minute to get into them. Actually, the roads, I’m surprised, aren’t bad, but we’ve seen a lot of down tree limbs,” said Katzer.

Katzer isn’t the only one impressed with the road conditions.

“The road is great. I was really surprised this morning that it wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been,” said Kristen Thomas, another driver in Pittsburg.

Main roadways are clear, as KDOT workers mobilized their snow emergency plan yesterday morning, prepping plows and treating highways overnight, but officials say drivers still need to exercise caution.

“Even though motorists are able to go close to the normal speed, they still need to be aware. There may be an isolated slick spot,” said George Dockery, Area Engineer for KDOT.

KDOT crews use a salt-sand mixture, beet juice and a salt-water brine to treat roads, but when temperatures dip below zero, these methods can prove ineffective.

“When the temperatures get that low, our chemicals really, they work, but they’re working so slowly. So we count more on our sand at intersections and things that help try to have some traction,” explained Dockery.

Officials are keeping an eye on the weather, but, in the meantime, drivers are appreciating the efforts of these crews.

“I think they’re saints. I don’t think we always appreciate the work that some people do and city agencies, state agencies, there’s people out helping us be safe each and every day and I think they’ve done a good job,” said Pittsburg driver Michael Gray.

You can check road conditions in your area here.