The U.S. Department
of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration announced Dec.
30 a new and more sophisticated weather information tool, the Maintenance
Decision Support System, to help road-maintenance managers predict
the impact of adverse winter weather conditions and plan treatment.
to proper weather and road-condition information before and during
adverse winter weather conditions will help transportation system
managers take appropriate measures to keep roads open," FHWA
Administrator Mary E. Peters said.
The system uses
the latest weather-forecasting techniques to recommend maintenance
alternatives and show their resulting benefits, which will enable
highway departments to deploy snowplows, use chemicals and improve
road conditions more effectively.
Although it was
designed to respond to the needs of state departments of transportation,
the Maintenance Decision Support System and other resources are available
on the FHWA's Road Weather Management Web site at www.ops.fhwa.dot.gov/weather/index.htm.