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Local governments preparing for winter road conditions

Columbia is prepping for winter and will showcase the winter weather facilities at the annual Snow Palooza open house Thursday.

During the event the city opened up its winter weather facilities and equipment for the public to get an up close look and talk about snow-fighting operations with engineers, plow drivers and support personnel.

“Winter weather response never stops, we’re always preparing,” Columbia Public Works engineering and operations manager Richard Stone said

ABC17 News previously reported the extreme weather last winter caused road treatment and preparation costs to skyrocket for several Missouri agencies.

Stone said Columbia Public Works has the same amount of money it had last year, but is short on staff. “We do have an attrition problem, keeping employees, but we are trying to fill those positions as much as we can,” he said.

Columbia Public Works has 5,000 tons of rock salt to work with for the upcoming winter, which is the same amount the agency stocks each year.

Boone County Road and Bridge Superintendent Bryan Boyce said his agency is beginning preparations for the upcoming winter with a “dry run” of their plows on Oct. 28.

He said the department likes to start the winter out with 3,000 tons of rock salt, which he said can get the county through a rough winter. The department used nearly 2,000 tons of rock salt on the roads last year, which had to be replenished for this year. Boyce said the department didn’t buy any additional equipment or hire more staff for the winter.

A spokesman for MoDOT’s Central District said the department has started prepping for winter, and has bought more material than usual to melt ice and snow on the roads.


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