CDOT Crews Prepared for Incoming Storm

November 21, 2013 - Northeastern Colorado/CDOT Region 4 - Motorists encouraged to prepare vehicles for winter driving, check highway & weather conditions before weekend travel.

ROAD CONDITION/CLOSURE INFORMATION: To find the conditions and closures, log onto our traveler information site at or call 511 from anywhere in the state. Better yet, sign up to receive wireless text alerts and/or e-mails about road conditions on our web site at (see the green phone icon in the upper right-hand corner). Join CDOT on Twitter and Facebook as well.

NORTHEAST COLORADO – It’s time to get prepared for winter driving! Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) maintenance crews are on standby for winter storm patrols starting tonight atmidnight. This means the Maintenance Area crews (see worker numbers below) are out on 24-hour operation—at least half out at any given time on rotating 8- or 12-hour shifts—until they reach dry road conditions. Between three inches and eight inches expected to fall throughout northeast Colorado during the storm.

"Despite the September flooding that heavily impacted northeastern Colorado, our crews have been diligently preparing for the upcoming winter weather," said CDOT Region 4 Maintenance Superintendent Tim Miles. "We have some of the best maintenance crews we could ask for, and they will be doing everything they can this winter to keep our highways, and those who travel on them, as safe as possible."

Additional tips for getting prepared for winter weather travel are noted below.

The following information provides details on each of Section 1’s Maintenance Area and Patrol locations, personnel and equipment. Note that in addition to the patrols crews listed below, the Maintenance Section also includes special crews dedicated to rest area maintenance, heavy equipment operation and shop maintenance.

The ridge of high pressure over Colorado will flatten over the next two days as a large closed low-pressure system approaches from the southwest. Warm air will continue to move into the state today with increasing amounts of moisture in the upper portion of the atmosphere. Winds will be in the low to moderate range from the west and southwest statewide. Low-level moisture will increase this evening as the closed low moves into California and begins to track across the southwest US. Precipitation, if any, will be limited to the high peaks until Thursday when moist southwest flow moves into the San Juan Mountains. The combination of the closed low and a second system moving in from the north could make for an interesting holiday weekend.</p>

Region 4, Section 1, GREELEY

The entire Greeley Maintenance Section (also see individual maintenance areas, below) has 266 maintenance workers and 256 pieces of snow removal including 3 tow plows; 43 trucks are equipped with liquid deicer applicator tanks. Other plow trucks will carry sand/salt for providing traction or, at optimum temperatures, sand pre-wetted with liquid deicer for traction and effective ice-melting. Section 1 maintenance crews take care of 9,308 lane-miles (the combined lengths of each lane on every highway in the section). Total Section Budget for 2014:  $6,515,143.

Greeley Maintenance Area

The Greeley Maintenance Area includes patrols in: Fort Lupton (3 plows), Gilcrest (4 plows), Greeley West (4 plows), Greeley East (6 plows), Pierce (5 plows), Hudson (5 plows) and Wiggins (4 plows). The Greeley Area has 47 maintenance workers and 40 pieces of snow removal equipment (including 31 snowplows, 30 of which are equipped with *MDSS, and 1 tow plow). Greeley Area maintenance crews take care of 1,700 lane-miles. Total 2013/14 winter budget:  $875,170.

Boulder Maintenance Area

The Boulder Maintenance Area includes patrols in: Estes Park (5 plows), Lyons (2 plows), Frederick (4 plows), Boulder (4 plows), Nederland (3 plows), Superior (7 plows) and Mead (4 plows). The Boulder Maintenance Area has 42 maintenance workers and 40 pieces of snow removal (including 29 snowplows, 26 of which are equipped with MDSS). Other plow trucks carry sand/salt and for providing traction. Boulder Area maintenance crews take care of 1,078 lane-miles. Total 2013/14 winter budget:  $ 1,216,335.

Brush Maintenance Area

The Brush Maintenance Area includes patrols in: Fort Morgan (5 plows), two in Brush (5 plows), Akron (4 plows), Yuma (4 plows), Wray (3 plows), Anton (3 plows) and Joes (3 plows). The Brush Area has 42 maintenance workers and 37 pieces of snow removal equipment (including 27 snowplows, 13 of which are equipped with MDSS, and 1 tow plow). Brush Area maintenance crews take care of 1,568 lane-miles. Total 2013/14 winter budget:  $588,235.

Burlington Maintenance Area

The Burlington Maintenance Area includes patrols in: Arriba (5 plows), Punkin Center (3 plows), Burlington (7 plows), Seibert (7 plows), Hugo (3 plows), Kit Carson (3 plows) Matheson (2 plows), Cheyenne Wells (2 plows), Limon (8 plows), Kiowa (3 plows) and Deer Trail (5 plows). The Burlington Area has 50 maintenance workers and 63 pieces of snow removal equipment (including 48 snowplows, 8 of which are equipped with MDSS). Burlington Area maintenance crews take care of 2,119 lane-miles. Total 2013/14 winter budget:  $1,538,364.

Loveland Maintenance Area

The Loveland Maintenance Area includes patrols in: Livermore (3 plows), Fort Collins (2 plows), Poudre Canyon (4 plows), Fort Collins (6 plows), Loveland (5 plows) and Wellington (5 plows). The Loveland Area has 40 maintenance workers and 37 pieces of snow removal equipment (including 25 snowplows, 23 of which are equipped with MDSS). Loveland Area maintenance crews take care of 1,110 lane-miles. Total 2013/14 winter budget:  $1,225,141.

Sterling Maintenance Area

The Sterling Maintenance Area includes patrols in: New Raymer (4 plows), Sterling West (3 plows), Sterling East (6 plows), Crook (3 plows), Julesburg (5 plows) Haxtun (3 plows) and Holyoke (3 plows). The Sterling Area has 43 maintenance workers and 39 pieces of snow removal equipment (including 27 snowplows, 12 of which are equipped with MDSS,  and 1 tow plow). Sterling Area maintenance crews take care of 1,733 lane-miles. Total 2013/14 winter budget:  $808,946.

*Maintenance Decision Support System (MDSS), installed on many CDOT plow trucks throughout the state, combines advanced weather prediction, advanced road condition prediction and rules of practice for anti-icing and de-icing to generate road treatment recommendations on a route-by-route basis. The goal of MDSS is to provide more effective use of maintenance resources in order to increase safety, reliability and mobility on roadways. The MDSS system allows CDOT crews to input real-time conditions, including road and ambient temperature, type of snow removal products being used and the application rate. After comparing the information to 15 weather reports, the system will then provide suggested treatments based on the information and models. The system may tell the operator to re-treat the road at a later time, apply different products at different rates or even to continue current procedures. The suggested treatment can then be followed or the operator can override the system.


  1. Plan your trip! Log on to CDOT’s Winter Driving web page at: for tips, road conditions, information on CDOT’s 14-hour snow plow coverage and more; or call 511 for statewide road conditions. Also, sign up for FREE wireless text and/or e-mail updates on road conditions/closures—see the green phone icon in the upper right-hand corner of our web site home page. Motorists can also log onto the National Weather Service’s site at
  2. Always keep the top half of your gas tank full. It can give you better traction and gives you a bigger margin of error if you get stuck and have to keep the engine running periodically to keep warm.
  3. If you are stuck in a serious storm do not leave your car. Run the engine periodically and wait for help.
  4. Carry blankets, water, a flashlight, a shovel, some nutrition bars or other food for sustenance. Winterize your vehicle's safety kit by including extra blankets, sand to help gain traction in the event you become stuck on ice or snow, jumper cables, an ice scraper and lock de-icer.
  5. Remember that 4-wheel drive does not mean 4-wheel stop. A 4-wheel drive vehicle will not stop any better in icy conditions, especially if you have inadequate snow tires.
  6. Be sure of your route. Don't go exploring in the back-country without some local knowledge, especially during a storm or when one is bearing down anywhere near your location.
  7. Be sure you have good tires. The Colorado State Patrol recommends at least 1/8 of an inch tread depth. All season radials on a front-wheel-drive passenger vehicle are adequate for most situations; install them on all four tires. Four snow tires on most rear-wheel drive vehicles are usually adequate. Chain restrictions in Colorado are most often put into effect for commercial vehicles (semi-trailer trucks) and do not usually affect passenger vehicles (please see information on Colorado’s chain law at
  8. In poor visibility or even whiteout conditions, don't drive faster than you can see ahead. High speeds in poor or no visibility can lead to large chain reaction accidents. Remember you can't see around mountain curves and corners, either.
  9. In addition to these winter driving tips, CDOT reminds all motorists to respect winter weather, conduct a pre-trip inspection of your vehicle, leave extra space between your automobile and others on the road, and never drink and drive.
  10. Always buckle up!