23 Nov 2009, 12:31pm
Roads Safety:
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Comments Off on It’s that time of year again!

It’s that time of year again!

iceSignOn the way¬†home from¬†work one day last week, I noticed that TxDOT workers had started unfolding the “Watch for ice on bridge” signs.¬† That and the delivery of the phone books marks the beginning of the holiday season for me (although the latter is almost certainly nearing the end of the road, so-to-speak.)

Some folks wonder why the signs are displayed when there’s no ice or even the possibility of it.¬† Well, some time ago (nobody can recall just when, but it was at least a decade ago), TxDOT changed their policy to display these signs from just before the¬†date of the earliest average freeze for an area until after the average last freeze.¬† Prior to that, the signs would only be unfolded when freezing precipitation¬†was forecast.¬† This meant that TxDOT crews often had to scramble to get the signs ready for an incoming storm.¬† Also, as you might imagine, it requires considerable manpower (and thus expense)¬†to go out and unfold every sign, then go back after the storm and fold them back up.¬† Plus, there was always the chance of a freak storm hitting without warning, meaning there would not be time to get the signs opened.¬† So the decision was made to just leave them unfolded for the entire time¬†that ice is typically¬†possible.¬† Yes, it means that most of the time they’re¬†not applicable, but if nothing else, they do raise awareness¬†of the dangers of the season.

 

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