ODOT Crews Remain Busy Working To Clear Roadways Following Back-To-Back Storms


Wednesday, February 17th 2021, 10:37 pm
By: Sylvia Corkill


OKLAHOMA CITY -

The Oklahoma Department of Transportation said "busy" doesn't properly describe the last two weeks for its crews.

In anticipation of what was ahead ODOT said they wasted no time preparing and planning for the winter storm.

“This was probably the toughest one because it kept going,” said Terri Angier, ODOT Interagency Liaison and Chief of Media and Public Relations.

For nearly two weeks ODOT's Angier said Oklahoma's roadways were pounded with ice, powdery snow, and slush.

“So, you had about twelve days of having to continually change tactics and try and have conversations with mother nature, who wasn’t listening,” said Angier.

Knowing what lie ahead ODOT prepared for weeks.

Opting to prematurely restock sand and salt, spare vehicle parts were ordered, contractors were pivoted from construction to ice and snow duty which helped to beef up the 1200-member team to 1500.

“We knew the type of storm; it was going to require a lot of plowing verses melting. As we saw temps fall below 20 it makes salt not be as effective so, plowing was our number one thing,” said Angier.            

And while crews manned the roads for hours and days on end Angier said they're not ready to take their foot off the gas just yet.

We still need a couple of days to clean the highways,” said Angier.

Angier said this storm could have wreaked more havoc. But she said because of the pandemic, more people were able to work from home and stay off the roads.

After 31 years with ODOT she was no exception.

“That is our job to go and tell others to stay home, this was the first time I was able to work from home and not miss a beat,” said Angier. 

After cleanup Angier said ODOT will inspect their roadways and highways for damage.