DES PERES, Mo. – The potential for approaching winter weather could mean problems for Tuesday morning’s commute, and that is not good news given the snow this past weekend that caused crashes and traffic trouble in some areas.
MoDOT spokesperson Jack Wang told us MoDOT crews will be pre-treating roads all day into the evening ahead of the storm which is expected to move on Monday night. Wang also shared that the focus will be on elevated surfaces like bridges and overpasses. He explained at this point MoDOT thinks this storm will be more about treatment rather than plowing a lot of snow.
Overnight Friday into Saturday, parts of our region saw significant snowfall. The heaviest snow fell south and east of St. Louis. Five and a half inches of snow fell in Belleville, Illinois. Scott Air Force Base had five inches, and down in Desoto, nearly six and a half inches of snow fell.
The amount of snow that came down seemed to catch many off-guard. Some roads became very slick, leading to dangerous conditions and crashes. FOX 2 captured video of multiple wrecks both in the metro east and around the Poplar Street Bridge.
This weekend’s snowfall came not long after MoDOT held its annual Winter Operations Drill. That’s where snowplow operators drive routes and test equipment before any winter storms hit.
MoDOT shared that they are facing significant staffing shortages and are 1,000 workers down statewide. Those staffing issues could certainly impact MoDOT’s response to a major winter storm.
Here is some of what MoDOT told us during that drill.
“We will focus on clearing interstates and higher volume major routes,” St. Louis District Assistant Engineer Michelle Forneris shared. “It’s very likely that state-lettered and numbered routes will potentially take us 24 hours or more before you see snow plows on those routes.”
According to IDOT officials, they are also experiencing driver shortages.