Slush needs to be plowed off highways more quickly, says letter writer Rubenoff Johnson. File photo

LETTER: Winter maintenance needs to be improved on our highways

The roads are more dangerous than they were years ago

The winter highway maintenance program years ago was far superior to what we experience today.

Snow was removed by frequent snow plow passes and by passes with a grader with ice blades during storms or after storms. Salt-sweetened sand of size was applied to hills and curves and the general highway system, and crews were assigned to the area 24-7 from Oct. 1 to March 31 each winter. During the melting seasons a sand truck would patrol the areas and sand the patches of ice created by melting snow on elevated curves

Now, with new technology we see more slush and water on the road systems four times greater than before because of a new policy of using de-icer chemicals. It is imperative that road slush be plowed off the highway as soon as the snow becomes slushy, to prevent vehicles from losing control in the road slush and to lessen the amount of water, which can produce tire hydroplaning.

It’s also critical for road and traffic safety that patrols be made with sand trucks to apply traction restorer sand on spots where moisture is on the highway. Otherwise when the refreeze temperature is reached the road water will will freeze quickly and make a skating rink of the road system in the area of elevation. We have a highway from hell with injuries and death due to vehicles losing control on these dangerous roads.

Rubenoff Johnson,

Nelson

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