MnDOT prepares for Friday snowstorm with 800 plows

Updated: January 16, 2020 08:48 PM

Issues can occur for the Minnesota Department of Transportation when it snows for 24 hours, especially given how quickly it can fall.

Eight hundred plow trucks across the state are preparing for the snow this week. Although, depending on how fast the snow falls, MnDOT says it could be challenging to keep up.


MnDOT is spending their time inside to prep for the weather. Some employees spent the day Thursday checking equipment to make sure they are good to go for Friday's storm.  One of MnDOT's most essential pieces of equipment, a snowplow, is getting a new blade after it got caught and bent in a culvert.

"Any type of work we can get to now, it'll put us in a better shape for when the snow starts on Friday," said Anne Meyer, with MnDOT Communications.

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According to MnDOT, there will be some work to pre-treat areas that are prone to slick spots like bridges, ramps and areas with shade. They also focused on snow removal in some areas to make room for more snow.

The snow is expected to be in the Twin Cities by around noon Friday and pick up after.

"This is a long storm, it looks like it's going be a statewide impact, so all 800 snowplows are ready to hit the roads, we've got twice the amount of operators for those snowplows that keep those plows on the road 24 hours a day, so operators will work 12-hour shifts, 24 hours a day until all roads are back in the clear," Meyer said.

In Layfayette, southwest of the metro, MnDOT created a snow fence to deal with the wind. But the actual snow may be challenging, too.

"If it comes down at the rate we're looking at, our snowplows just aren't able to keep up with that on all lanes of traffic, so it's going to take a little bit longer to clear roads, just as a result of not only the amount of snow but the winds that are supposed to come with this and also the colder temperatures," she said.

George Erler works in heating and air and said snow doesn't bother him, working outside in the cold does.

"It's worse when it's cold like it is right now," he said.

"It will be better tomorrow," Erler added.

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Jessica Miles

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