(ISHPEMING, MI.)–In Michigan, winter has arrived to stay by early February. That makes it a great time to review what drivers should expect during winter storm events, and what their responsibilities are for getting to their destinations safely.Representatives from the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT), Michigan State Police (MSP), and other local road and law enforcement agencies will present information on how roads are maintained each winter, and how Michigan drivers should respond to slippery conditions and reduced visibility. The agencies will present on both topics at a public meeting at 2 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 1, at MDOT’s office in Ishpeming. “Maintenance workers at the state and local levels have years of experience and improved technology at their disposal for dealing with winter weather, but they can only do so much,” said MDOT Superior Region Traffic and System Operations Specialist Jason DeGrand. “We want drivers to know that we’ll be out working to clear roads as quickly as possible, but they share a responsibility for safety when they venture out.” “One very important fact to remember when driving on slippery roads during adverse weather is that the handling capability of your vehicle is drastically reduced,” said Spl/F/Lt. Jim Flegel, MSP State Services Bureau. “It is every driver’s responsibility to maintain control of their vehicle at all times and the only way to compensate is to slow down and increase your following distance.”
MDOT staff will cover winter maintenance topics, including:
– Levels of service for state roads (I, US, and M-routes),
– Contract agencies providing maintenance on state highways,
– Current and new winter maintenance equipment,
– New technology such as green flashing lights on plow trucks,
– Winter maintenance budgets including salt and sand use, and
– Communications efforts.
MSP staff will cover:
– Driver responsibility in winter driving conditions,
– Driving tips for starting, stopping and turning,
– Vehicle and emergency kit preparation,
– Driver and passenger protection in winter driving and crash situations,
– Crash prevention, and
– The Move Over Law.
The meeting will be in the conference room at MDOT’s Ishpeming Transportation Service Center at 100 South Westwood Drive.