Another week, another storm, another expected commute

Apr 3, 2023, 6:30 AM | Updated: Jan 5, 2024, 2:57 pm

Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News...

FILE: UDOT crews plow the snow in Salt Lake County. (Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

(Jeffrey D. Allred, Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Plow drivers were expected to have their hands full at the start of another week, as another storm barrels toward the state.


Expected unsafe driving conditions due to weather prompted the closure Monday of the BYU Salt Lake Center campus. Remote work is encouraged at the University of Utah.

Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons are closed, according to the KSL Traffic Center.

“We didn’t really expect to really be doing it at this time of year,” said Mitch Shaw, spokesman for the Utah Department of Transportation. “Here we are, you know, it’s April, and we’re still dealing with some pretty major snowstorms.”

Shaw said their plow drivers have been especially busy this year. UDOT typically budgets $24 million for snow removal. They plowed passed that amount in February. And it hasn’t let up much since.

“It’s been a while since our plow operators have put in this much time and cleared this much snow,” he expressed.

Even when they aren’t plowing snow, Shaw said the vast amount of moisture we’ve had is causing some roads to crumble, and those same plow drivers are out fixing potholes.

“Those plow operators have definitely been overworked this year,” he said. “They really deserve a pat on the back.”

Their message for drivers has remained the same all year long: Slow down.

UDOT has a team of meteorologists tracking when and where the storm will hit so they can be prepared to clear the roads. Crews working on avalanche mitigation have also kept busy this snow season, working to prevent slides and clean up others.

“We’re kind of hoping that this perpetual winter will come to an end soon,” Shaw said.

Related: As UDOT plows stay busy, snowplow spending trends upward




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Another week, another storm, another expected commute