Latest News

Research Roundup – Winter Maintenance at the TRB Annual Meeting April 3, 2020

Clear Roads has published our annual compilation of winter maintenance research that was presented at the 2020 Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting. The 2020 compilation includes 21 papers and posters, with links to abstracts and presentation materials. Presentations covered a wide range of winter maintenance topics, including materials, equipment, technology and performance management. Report.

National Survey Compiles Five Years of Winter Maintenance Data March 20, 2020

Clear Roads has published its fifth Annual Survey of State Winter Maintenance Data, which compiles data on winter resources, materials and costs from 36 states for the 2018-2019 winter season. The spreadsheet-based tool includes a United States map that displays many of these metrics. The tool includes five years of data, and displays averages and changes across winter seasons. See the project page.

MnDOT Shares Training Resources on Sustainable Salt Use March 5, 2020

It’s a challenge every agency faces: making winter roadways safe for drivers while minimizing the environmental impact of salt use. To help its districts meet both goals, Minnesota DOT has developed a best practices guide and a compilation of training resources for operators and supervisors.

MnDOT’s Salt Sustainability resources address:

  • Equipment training, including training videos on spreader operation and fabrication instructions for salt chutes and air foils.
  • Calibration of spreaders and liquid application equipment.
  • Decision-making, including using maintenance decision support systems (MDSS) and selecting materials and methods.
  • Material handling and storage.

Compiled as part of MnDOT’s Salt Sustainability initiative, the resources also provide guidance on anti-icing, direct liquid application, truck washing and more.

Winter Maintenance Research Roundup February 5, 2020

Here’s a look at some in-progress research projects from agencies around the country.

  • Evaluation of Slurry Box, Underbody Scraper, and Two-Way Reversible Plow, Minnesota DOT. Project page.
  • Weather-Responsive Management Strategies, Texas DOT. Project page.
  • Reducing Uncertainties in Snow Fence Design: Development of Methods for Estimation of Snow Drifting and the Snow Relocation Coefficient, Iowa DOT. Project description.
  • Guidelines for Using Photogrammetric Tools on Unmanned Aircraft Systems to Support the Rapid Monitoring of Avalanche-Prone Roadside Environments, Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium. Project page.
Winter Maintenance Research Roundup January 10, 2020

Check out these recent reports from agencies around the country:

  • Update of the Class 8 Truck Study, Utah DOT, October 2019. Research report.

  • Road Weather and Creative Safety Messaging on Dynamic Message Signs, Minnesota DOT, October 2019. Research report.

  • Validation of the Mechanical Rocker Test Method for Ice Melting Capacity (MRT-IMC), Nebraska DOT, 2019. Research report.

  • Brine Application Equipment and Methodology, Caltrans, January 2019. Research report.

In training news, if you missed the TRB webinar on NCHRP Research Report 889: Performance Measures in Snow and Ice Control Operations, the recording and presentation slides are now available. Webinar.

Call for Presentations: 2020 International Road Weather and Winter Maintenance Conference & Peer Exchange December 23, 2019

Call for Presentations: Organizers of the 2020 International Road Weather and Winter Maintenance Conference & Peer Exchange are looking for practical and innovative presentations on best practices in road weather management and winter maintenance operations. Presentation abstracts are due March 2; the conference and peer exchange will be held September 21-23 in Atlanta. Details and conference registration.

QPL Update: The Clear Roads Qualified Products List has resumed accepting product checklists and samples from vendors. For details on the submission process, visit the QPL page.

Back view of a plow with reflective markings and lights on a snowy road Winter Maintenance Research Roundup December 6, 2019

Check out these recent reports from agencies around the country:Back view of a plow with reflective markings and lights on a snowy road

  • Synthesis of Safety Applications in Winter Weather Operations, Texas DOT, November 2019. Research report.

  • Relationships Between Weather and Roadway Safety, Iowa DOT, September 2019. Research report.

  • Modeling the Macroscopic Effects of Winter Maintenance Operations on Traffic Mobility on Washington Highways, Center for Advanced Multimodal Mobility Solutions and Education, September 2019. Research report.

  • Cost-Effectiveness of Constructing Minimal Shelter to Store INDOT Equipment (Weather Protection), Indiana DOT, February 2019. Research report.

In training news, Iowa DOT recently posted an update to the agency’s popular Winter Operations Training video series. The new series includes 13 videos on topics such as plowing techniques, preseason preparation, and how deicing chemicals work.

Save the Date: 2020 Pacific Northwest Snowfighters Conference November 12, 2019

Save the date! The Pacific Northwest Snowfighters will hold their 2020 conference on June 2 and 3 in Portland, Oregon. For details on past conferences, see the PNS website.

Other upcoming events:

Hope to see you there!

Clear Roads Training Materials Featured in APWA Reporter October 24, 2019

As temperatures drop, industry magazines are turning their focus to winter maintenance. The October issue of APWA Reporter features an article on Clear Roads training materials:

For more winter maintenance news, check out Roads & Bridges’ annual Winter Maintenance issue. Article topics include mobile sensors, smarter salt spreaders, and corrosion mitigation.

Winter Maintenance Research Roundup October 7, 2019

Check out these recent reports from agencies around the country:

  • NCHRP Research Report 889: Performance Measures in Snow and Ice Control Operations, National Cooperative Highway Research Program, 2019. Research report.
  • Snow and Ice Control Performance Measurement: Comparing “Grip,” Traffic Speed Distributions and Safety Outcomes During Winter Storms, Vermont Agency of Transportation, April 2019. Research report.
  • Bio-Based Renewable Additives for Anti-Icing Applications (Phase II), Center for Environmentally Sustainable Transportation in Cold Climates, January 2019. Research report.
  • Evaluating Potential Effects of Deicing Salts on Roadside Carbon Sequestration, Center for Environmentally Sustainable Transportation in Cold Climates, January 2019. Research report.