illinois Digital News

Illinois Tollway To Deploy Full Fleet Of Plows To Keep Roads Clear


ILLINOIS – As local communities across the greater Chicago area prepare for a significant winter storm beginning on Thursday, state transportation officials are also making plans for how they will handle what could be blizzard-like conditions to keep Illinois roads clear for holiday travelers.

Officials from the Illinois Tollway announced on Wednesday that it will deploy its full fleet of 196 snowplows in response to the storm that is expected to hit the region beginning on Thursday. Weather forecasters are expecting heavy snow and plunging temperatures to extend into Friday at a time when 1.7 million motorists across Illinois are expected to hit the road for holiday travel.

“Our top priority during this storm will be keeping our customers safe by operating our plows around the clock to rapidly remove snow and ice from our roads and by quickly responding to any drivers whose vehicles become disabled on our system during this severe weather,” Illinois Tollway Executive Director Cassaundra Rouse said in a news release. “Our customers can help us keep them safe by slowing down, allowing extra time to reach their destinations, and by giving our snowplows the extra room they need to keep the roads clear.”

The Tollway said that it will deploy a staff of up to 200 people per shift this weekend as forecasters are expecting blowing snow to materialize as winds could reach up to 55 mph. at times.

Officials from the state highway department said that drivers whose vehicles become disabled should activate their hazard lights and dial *999 from a cell phone for assistance from Illinois State Police District 15.

Drivers should note the roadway they are using, as well as the direction of travel and the nearest milepost or crossroad. For crashes involving property damage only, drivers should report the incident to (630) 241-6800 ext. 5042 and continue driving.

Motorists can receive real-time information on pavement conditions and roadway incidents, drivers should up for Tollway Trip Tweets at from the Tollway’s website

Tweeters can follow all five Tollway Trips or just the roadways that interest them. The five are: @94_294_Tollway, @I_90_Tollway, @I_88_Tollway, @I_355_Tollway and @IL_390_Tollway.

Drivers also should use caution when passing snowplows. During heavy snowfall, snowplows often work in tandem to remove as much ice, slush and snow as possible from all lanes at once. When it is safe to pass, the plows spread out and allow traffic to flow around them.

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