Quantcast

Plow operators work to keep roads safe - KRTV News in Great Falls, Montana

Plow operators work to keep roads safe

Posted: Dec 29, 2017 5:38 PM Updated:

Matt Komac has been driving snowplows for the Montana Department of Transportation for 18 years.

He says it’s a job that requires a lot of flexibility.

“We’re kind of on a little bit of a standby-type situation. When it gets nasty out and we need to get out there, we come out.”

“MDT’s Helena section currently has about nine plows like this one out on the road. Operators will be working 12-hour shifts, 24 hours a day, for as long as the snow keeps falling.”

Plow drivers have been dealing with fairly constant snowfall, and strong winds in some areas.

But Komac says there have been positive signs as well.

“It’s actually snow, it doesn’t have a lot of moisture in it, so we’re not dealing with the ice that we have in the last few storms.”

Plows are designed to clear a lane of travel in one pass.

On the interstate, they’re often focusing on the left, passing lane.

Komac says the conditions can be a particular challenge for plow operators.

“A lot of people think that we have better visibility than them, not so much. We get the snow coming over the top of the plow, and so our visibility can be a lot worse than what the normal driving public is.”

He also warns drivers to be especially careful not to follow plows too closely.

“The fastest they want us to drive it with the plow in the air is 45, and when we’re plowing, the fastest you want to drive it is 35. People on the interstate are doing 80 miles an hour, they don’t realize we’re going as slow as we are, and, boom, they run into the back of us.”

WEATHER
  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Nine-year-old boy dies in Jefferson County crash

    Nine-year-old boy dies in Jefferson County crash

    Monday, April 23 2018 10:11 AM EDT2018-04-23 14:11:46 GMT

    A nine-year-old boy died in an ATV crash near Boulder after suffering severe head injuries.

    A nine-year-old boy died in an ATV crash near Boulder after suffering severe head injuries.

  • Search for person in Missouri River is now a recovery operation

    Search for person in Missouri River is now a recovery operation

    Monday, April 23 2018 12:45 PM EDT2018-04-23 16:45:01 GMT

    They do not yet know if the person is a man or a woman.

    They do not yet know if the person is a man or a woman.

  • Hard landing: Evel Knievel Days canceled

    Hard landing: Evel Knievel Days canceled

    Monday, April 23 2018 3:20 PM EDT2018-04-23 19:20:54 GMT
    MTN News PhotoMTN News Photo
    MTN News PhotoMTN News Photo
    BUTTE – The festival dedicated to the “King of the Daredevils” has been officially canceled this year after being an annual event for the last 15 years. This summer’s three-day Evel Knievel Days festival has been canceled due to lack of funding, according to a statement released by the festival’s organizers. The festival was set for July 26-28, but organizers were unable to raise the $200,000 needed to hold the festival this year. Festival organizers cl...
    BUTTE – The festival dedicated to the “King of the Daredevils” has been officially canceled this year after being an annual event for the last 15 years. This summer’s three-day Evel Knievel Days festival has been canceled due to lack of funding, according to a statement released by the festival’s organizers. The festival was set for July 26-28, but organizers were unable to raise the $200,000 needed to hold the festival this year. Festival organizers cl...
Powered by Frankly

© KRTV.com 2018, KRTV.com
A CORDILLERA COMMUNICATIONS Station
All rights reserved
Privacy Policy, | Terms of Service, and Ad Choices

Can't find something?