ODOT road crews on standby for possible snow

ODOT road crews on standby for possible snow

ODOT road crews on standby for possible snow

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by Rod Hill / KGW.com

NWCN.com

Posted on November 17, 2010 at 9:39 AM

PORTLAND -- The Oregon Department of Transportation is watching the weather forecast closely, as road crews prepare for the season's first possible snow in the city.

The latest forecast is calling for cold air which could bring snow showers down to 1,000 feet, at least.

Officials said ODOT  has scheduled  extra shifts to be on standby starting Wednesday night in anticipation of the snow storm.

ODOT crews use rubber edges attached to their snow plows, which tend to glide over the reflective lane markers embedded in many city streets.  The cost of protecting the lane markers is potential ice build up.  Authorities have explained that the rubber-edged plows are one of the reasons thick ice accumulates during Portland's larger storms. 

December 2008 was the last time icy roads got so bad that ODOT made the decision to remove the rubber and put steel-edged plows on the roadways.  The steel plows clear the ice, but also destroy the lane markers. 

In 2008, it cost ODOT nearly $3 million to replace damaged reflectors.

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