As the first snow blankets the Treasure Valley, local Facebook groups are buzzing with complaints about slippery roads, chaotic traffic, and the processes for taking care of the roads after it snows. Where are the snow plows? Where do they go first?

The Ada County Highway District (ACHD) is stepping up to provide crucial information on the priorities and strategies guiding snow plow operations in the area, and they are urging residents to stay informed to ensure awareness and road safety. Below are the details and a list of the priority roads.

What Does the ACHD Use?

ACHD employs a combination of magnesium chloride, salt, sand, and plowing to combat winter storms, both in anti-icing efforts before the storm and de-icing during and after the event. The key to their approach lies in a prioritized system that determines which roads get attention first. While recognizing the importance of residential streets, ACHD prioritizes main roads due to higher traffic volume and safety concerns.

What Are the Priority Roads?

• Arterial and collector roads
• Major intersections
• Overpasses and bridges
• Hospitals and fire stations
• School and railroad crossings
• Streets with grades (steepness) over six percent

However, the ACHD alone cannot guarantee complete road safety. After winter weather events, it's the responsibility of property and business owners to keep adjacent areas and sidewalks clear. Also, residents are encouraged not to push snow into the street, as it can block paths, storm drains, and potentially create hazards for others.

By understanding and cooperating with these guidelines from the ACHD, the community can enjoy safer roads and a smoother winter experience for everyone.

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