December 11, 2020 (Lincoln, Neb.) — Record high temperatures look to change to seasonal winter storms today through tomorrow.
This weekend, the Nebraska Department of Transportation (NDOT) crews are prepared for the latest round of winter weather which looks to impact much of the State. While the forecast could fluctuate, concerns are highest with the potential for heaviest snowfall during evening commuting hours. Workers and equipment will be out to clear highways and monitor changing conditions throughout the weekend.
“This winter storm will affect a large portion of Nebraska, with the highest potential being in our eastern regions,” said Interim NDOT Director Moe Jamshidi. “Our crews at NDOT remain ready to address winter storms as they arise. NDOT continues to work to maintain the safety and health of its teammates to ensure plows are out to clear the way for travelers. Drivers are encouraged to be informed about weather and road conditions before making the decision to travel, especially during the late afternoon and evening hours when pavement temperatures can quickly drop, causing slick and icy conditions. We urge caution if you must travel during this winter storm and always know before you go.”
Travelers are advised to be alert, be aware, and check the most up to date travel conditions available through 511, Nebraska’s Advanced Traveler Information System. The system is available at all times via phone by, online at www.511.Nebraska.gov, Nebraska 511’s smartphone app or by dialing 511. Travelers are also encouraged to utilize NDOT’s Plow Tracker at https://plows.nebraska.gov/index.html where the public can observe road conditions in real time from the cabs of NDOT Snow Plows. Please note that weather conditions are often worse than they appear on camera.
Should travel be absolutely necessary, NDOT reminds motorists to be prepared by keeping warm clothing, water, and food in your vehicle. Be sure to travel on well-established routes and notify someone when you are leaving for your destination. If traveling a distance, a winter weather survival kit is advised with additional basic items.
Travelers are advised to not drive faster than conditions allow. Surfaces will be slick under the snow and visibility may be poor. Allow plenty of time to arrive at your destination.
With snowplows out on the roads, travelers are urged to be cautious and courteous to those operating them, making sure to:
Slow down as you approach plows. They travel slowly, usually 25-30 miles per hour or less. Stay well behind plows to give you and them plenty of room. When traveling outside of a business or residential district, it is unlawful to follow a highway maintenance vehicle (snowplow, truck or grader) more closely than 100 feet when it is plowing snow, spreading salt or sand, or displaying a flashing amber or blue light. Never pass a plow on the right – snowplows are equipped with “wing plows” which extend beyond the truck itself. Know where plows are and actions they may be taking while they plow snow. Motorists are reminded to make sure everyone in their vehicle wears a seat belt and children are in a car safety seat. Do not use cruise control in wet or snowy weather and keep a full gas tank.
For safe-driving tips and winter weather information, visit NDOT’s website, http://dot.nebraska.gov/safety/driving/winter/
As a reminder, the NSP Highway Helpline is available 24 hours per day for motorists in need of assistance. Drivers can reach NSP by dialing *55 from any cell phone. Call 911 for any emergency.