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Blizzard costs Oklahoma millions

Blizzard costs Oklahoma millions

NewsOK

BY JULIE BISBEE

Published: January 6, 2010

Clearing the roads of the record snowfall on Christmas Eve came with a hefty price tag.

The state Transportation Department spent nearly $4 million — about half of the money set aside for snow and ice removal for the fiscal year which ends June 30. The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority spent $950,000 — nearly twice what it budgeted for snow and ice removal.

The massive storm system dumped a record 13.5 inches of snow in Oklahoma City on Dec. 24, causing vehicle pileups and at one point shutting down the state’s interstates and turnpikes. By Christmas Day, roads were reopened and passable, said Kevin Bloss, state maintenance engineer.

While residents hunkered down and waited for the snowstorm to roll in, crews across the state were coating the roads with a liquid that helps ice melt, Bloss said. Transportation Department crews in the six divisions across the state worked 35,391 hours between Dec. 23 and Dec. 28, Bloss said.

"I really feel like we did above average,” Bloss said. "That’s what these maintenance crews like to do. When you give them the challenge of a severe storm, they rise to the top and give it their best.”... FULL ARTICLE


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