As another winter weather season begins, employees of the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT) are prepared once again to work around the clock to ensure motorists are as safe as possible when traveling on our state's roads and bridges.
Dedicated SCDOT employees work 12-hour shifts of pre-emptive ice treatments, snow plowing, and spreading salt and other materials to achieve safer, improved road conditions.
"Our employees prepare year-round for ice and snow conditions," said David Cook, State Maintenance Engineer. "We have a long tradition of stepping up during critical weather conditions and making sure our transportation system is as safe as possible."
In a winter weather emergency, SCDOT employees follow a designated plan in each county. Interstate highways are the first priority, followed by primary routes and areas near medical facilities and emergency shelters, Cook said. SCDOT has agreements with contractors and local governments to provide additional equipment and manpower when needed.
There are many ways the public can stay informed of the latest road conditions. These include the internet and the SCDOT's 511 Traveler Information System, a free telephone and internet resource.
When conditions warrant, SCDOT activates its online site for winter weather road conditions. This is available at SCDOT's home page, www.scdot.org, under "Winter Road Conditions." This page is activated at times when snow and ice conditions may affect South Carolina highways. The reports are updated around the clock by SCDOT personnel. Conditions are listed for freeways and state primary highways, which are first to be cleared during inclement winter weather.
When winter weather hits the state, SCDOT's State Traffic Management Center, located in Columbia, is operational and staffed continuously. The Director of Maintenance staff monitors forecasts, pavement temperatures and conditions statewide, making decisions to move resources statewide as necessary.
For updates and information on road and traffic conditions during snow/ice events in South Carolina, the public is encouraged to:
Visit www.scdot.org for county by county road condition information.
Visit www.511SC.org. This is South Carolina's 511 Traveler Information System, a free telephone and internet resource to help motorists save fuel, navigate South Carolina's roadways, reduce commuting times and minimize the impact of traffic incidents.
Call 511 for updates. Users should be aware that cell phone minutes and text message charges may apply.
Listen to local media updates.
Follow SCDOT on Twitter: http://twitter.com/SCDOTPress