ODOT issues warnings to keep you safe on the road among the snowplows

80 ODOT plows will be out to move snow
Updated: Jan. 18, 2019 at 10:30 PM EST
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CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Big snowplows, blowing snow, whipping winds and maybe an impatient driver or two can be a very bad mix during a snow storm.

Reduced visibility can disorient any driver and the next thing you know you are in the middle of a highway accident.

The Ohio Department of Transportation reports that three cars have hit plows in Ohio just this month, so ODOT is urging drivers to avoid crowding the plow during the upcoming storm.

“When they’re plowing so much snow like that, snow can come over the top of the plow and create a snow cloud and that can take your field of vision away very, very quickly,” said Amanda McFarland of ODOT District 12.

Other issues to keep in mind: plow drivers have limited vision, which adds up to blind spots. ODOT suggests that you stay two- to three-car lengths behind the plow. And those plows are going to be driving under the speed limit, and may make sudden stops or turns.

The ODOT plows are just one part of the story. Your city plows are maneuvering in much tighter spaces through your neighborhoods and they have a lot going on while driving.

“You have to operate the blade, operate the salt spreader and maintain your lanes,” says Kevin Carlin, a city of Parma snowplow driver, “There’s a lot to concentrate on other than somebody trying to jump in front of you.”

The best advice ODOT hopes you take away if you are heading onto the roads during the storm is to give the plows the room they need to do their job.

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