MoDOT's Facebook Friends Not So Friendly Following Snow

Categories: Community
stalled cars modot.jpg
Note to MoDOT: You may not want to post photos like this one on your Facebook page during the next snow dusting.
You've heard the news. Chances are you even experienced it firsthand. Yesterday's one-inch snowstorm caught the Missouri Department of Transportation completely unprepared.

The agency failed to pre-treat interstates with salt brine despite weather reports that the region would pick up snow. Instead, MoDOT began spreading salt when the storm hit around 3 a.m. But that plan backfired when MoDOT's trucks soon became entangled in morning traffic, leaving roads icy and slick.

Yesterday MoDOT's director Kevin Keith, admitted his crew failed. "We didn't do a very good job and my reaction to that is I'm disappointed," he said.

MoDOT's Facebook friends had even harsher criticism of the department yesterday. Here are some of the highlights we found:

modot facebook.jpg

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Brad Hicks
Brad Hicks

Here's the thing I don't get. They told KSDK-TV that the reason they didn't pre-treat earlier is that the forecast they were working from predicted heavy rain before the snow came in, and, in their experience, pre-treating before a rain is a waste of time and money.

But I can't find a single forecaster who was predicting rain. I'm a news junkie who checks three or four different forecasters regularly, just because it's easy to do and sometimes amusing, and while they all did disagree as to exactly when the snow would start, they all agreed that it would be at least an hour after the cold front came through, they all agreed it would be too cold to rain (or even sleet) by the time the precipitation started. So, and I ask this question more out of curiosity than anything, since I'm assuming he didn't just lie, who the heck do they use for weather forecasting?

The second observation I'd make is that this has been such a dry winter that it's also made the news that they're way under budget. And I get why that's a good thing, and I'm glad that they're not spending money just because they have it in the budget. But I'd like to hear that the person who decided not to pre-treat overnight has, since then, realized that with this much salt in inventory and this far below their overtime budget, even if they had been expecting a chance of rain, it would have been a better gamble to have just gone ahead and pre-treated -- if they were right and it rained, they wouldn't have been out much, and if they were wrong, pre-treating would have prevented what we did get, namely completely iced-over highways during morning rush. I'm not asking for someone to be fired, or even reprimanded; I'd just feel a bit more reassured if they said that they learned something from it.


I saw salt brine on the bridge coming back west from Illinois Weds. afternoon. I imagine they just hit trouble spots and figured MO drivers were completely incompetent. 50% blame to MoDOT... 50% to the generally terrible MO/IL driver


After living in NYC, I was amazed at the lack of plowing they do out here even on the days MoDot says they did a kick ass job.

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We get a little less snow than NYC, though.

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