MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The Minnesota Department of Transportation manages 800 snowplows and 150 truck stations across the state. While that’s a lot of equipment to keep track of, MnDOT has a strategy for combating 11,000 miles of highways.
They are called road and weather information stations – and you have probably driven by them.
The roadside stations MnDOT pavement temperature, wind speeds and even take real-time pictures of the road.
“We’re very scientific about our approach to removing snow and ice,” said Kevin Gutknecht of MnDOT.
Back at the office, the supervisor taps into a computer system to get the read out. Based on what may look like a complex labyrinth, they can tell what kinds of chemicals are needed.
“If, however, it’s really, really cold, they may want to put down more sand,” said Gutknecht
They can even figure out what areas need to be acted on first.
“Now, 60 miles per hour, that looks like it’s moving pretty good. That’s going to cause drifting,” said Gutknecht.
It’s a strategy born out of science and safety.