Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

News Release

March 22, 2016

Orange barrels on a highway

MnDOT prepares for snowstorm, reminds motorists to give snowplows room

ROCHESTER, Minn. — With snow forecast in southern Minnesota, the Minnesota Department of Transportation is in final preparation for the storm on Wednesday and Thursday.

Maintenance workers did spring cleanup work until noon today, March 22, and shifted to storm preparation in the afternoon as they went through final checklists to ensure the equipment is ready for the snowstorm forecasted for southeastern Minnesota in the coming days. Mechanics have been working the past few days to ensure that all of the snow removal equipment is functioning at its best.

MnDOT will deploy its 102 snowplows in the 11-county southeastern Minnesota district. Timing will depend on what type of moisture starts first: rain or snow. Snow totals from 4-11 inches are currently forecasted by the National Weather Service across southeastern Minnesota with some local areas expected to receive even greater totals.

Motorists can also prepare for the storm:

  • Check road conditions at www.511mn.org or call 511; with heavy moisture snow, it takes time to get roads back to good driving conditions.
  • Be patient and remember snowplows are working to improve road conditions for your trip.
  • Stay back at least five car lengths behind the plow, far from the snow cloud.
  • Stay alert for snowplows that turn or exit frequently and often with little warning. Plows may also travel over centerlines or partially into traffic to further improve road conditions.
  • Slow down to a safe speed for current conditions. Snowplows typically move at slower speeds.

For additional tips on safe winter driving, go to www.mndot.gov/workzone.

For real-time traffic and travel information in Minnesota, visit www.511mn.org or get the free smartphone app at Google Play or the App Store.

# # #