INDOT, DPW prepare for Monday snow: ‘We’ve been used to orange barrels, not yellow trucks’

Data pix.

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Don’t let the nice 50-degree Sunday fool you!  As you may have heard, winter weather is in the forecast.  Road crews are taking the proper measures right now to be prepared for what hits.

Are you ready for the snow?  It’s a sight we know well in the Midwest but oftentimes forget to prepare for.

“I don’t think we have a choice, I think winter is ready for us,” said Stephan Jeffers, an Indianapolis resident, “I’m born and raised in Indy, so I’m used to the weather.”

“Unpredictable,” Butler University student Gaby Nardella added. “You just never know what’s going to happen.”

However, the Department of Public Works and Indiana Department of Transportation do know what’s going to happen and they’re prepared.

“We’ve been preparing for this winter event really since the beginning of October, which is earlier than what we have done in years past,” said Mallory Duncan of INDOT.

INDOT will have a full fleet of 65 crews ready to go by Monday afternoon. DPW will deploy 80 plow trucks at 11 a.m. to treat roads. At 11 p.m. a new crew of 80 drivers will continue treating roads into the morning commute.

“What we’re really looking for is pavement temperature,” said Duncan, “Those bridges, overpasses, will freeze a lot sooner than let’s say, the mainline roads. So, we’re looking at pre-treating.”

It’s not just snow INDOT is keeping a close eye on—they're also paying attention to the dreaded potholes.

“You never know what to predict, but the past couple of years we’ve seen a lot of ice and a lot of freezing then during the week it will thaw and get warmer and then on the weekend again it will freeze and that is a recipe for potholes as we all know,” said Duncan.

Throughout te past several months, crews have worked to resurface and repair roads ahead of the winter weather.

“We are really hoping it will help a lot this winter,” said Duncan. “That’s where you’re going to see the biggest difference is the number of potholes will be way down.”

While crews are busy on the streets, there are things you can do, too.  Remember to check your tires and the forecast before you head out, pack an emergency road kit, slow down, and pull over if necessary.

Here's a list of essentials that the Department of Public Works suggest you place in the emergency kit.

  • Tools, including a jack, lug wrench, shovel
  • Chains or traction tires
  • Extra car fluids, including oil, washer fluid, antifreeze
  • Non-clumping kitty litter, sand, or de-icer
  • Reflectors and flags
  • Road maps
  • Extra warm clothes, boots, hat, and gloves
  • Ice scraper and snow brush
  • Cell phone and car adapter
  • Rechargeable flashlight
  • First aid kit
  • Matches or lighter
  • Battery jumper cables
  • Extra food and water
  • Blanket/sleeping bags
  • Pocket knife

“Slow down, take your time, plan a couple extra minutes on your way home,” said Duncan.

DPW has an Indy Snow Force viewer. It shows you in real-time which streets have been treated or plowed.

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