Winter Storm Road Conditions and Service Updates from Metro and MoDOT

Read this before you head out on the roads between now and the end of the weekend!

Tom Franklin
January 11, 2019 - 10:43 am

(KMOX file photo)

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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOX) — Metro officials are confident riders can get to-and-from during the winter storm.

Spokeswoman Patti Beck tells KMOX they've made sure enough staff is on hand. Plus, officials will be pretreating the Metro park-ride lots and platforms in advance.

MetroLink is usually able to operate in the snow, and Beck says the "wet and heavy" snow that is expected is actually better for the rail system than lighter, fluffier types of snow. Busses could be detoured, but Beck isn't anticipating any major issues there, either.

However, she's urging riders to follow them on their social media pages for updates:

Metro riders use their text service to check and make sure routes are on time. You can do that at 314-207-9786. Text service hours are being extended until 8:00 tonight. Beck says the text service will also be available on Saturday from 7 a.m. until 4 p.m.

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The Missouri Department of Transportation joined the Missouri State Highway Patrol and the National Weather Service in updating us on road conditions and the winter storm this morning.

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Before you head out the door, here's some things you need to be sure about, courtesy of MoDOT:

  1. Check the latest Missouri road conditions here.
  2. Please wear your seat belt and don’t drive distracted. Buckle Up Phone Down.
  3. Slow down and adjust your speed to the conditions. Do not use your cruise control.
  4. Keep mirrors, windows and lights clean.
  5. If your wipers are on, keep your headlights on. It’s the law.
  6. Stay at least six car lengths back from snowplows and equipment. Plowed snow can create a cloud that can blind drivers following too closely.
  7. If you encounter car troubles or are involved in a crash, please remain in your vehicle.

MoDOT also provides road condition information through its Customer Service Center. Dial 888-ASK-MODOT (888-275-6636) to speak with a customer service representative 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Also, increased traffic is expected in the Kansas City area this weekend as the Chiefs host the Indianapolis Colts in a divisional round playoff game at Arrowhead Stadium on Saturday. Kick-off is at 3:35 p.m. In addition, many students will be returning to college campuses after the winter break, which means more vehicles on the road.

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The Missouri State Highway Patrol also issued the following information before the winter storm:

It is next to impossible to stop quickly on snow-covered or icy roads. Drivers should compensate for these slippery conditions by increasing their following distance when driving. Decrease your vehicle's speed when driving in snow or on ice. During inclement weather, driving the speed limit is not "exercising the highest degree of care." Missouri law (Section 304.012 RSMo.) states the responsibility of exercising the highest degree of care while driving rests on the driver's shoulders.

If you do need to travel in inclement weather, the Missouri State Highway Patrol suggests keeping your fuel tank at least half full. Having an ice scraper, tire chains, battery booster cables, blankets, extra coats, gloves, water, non-perishable food, flashlight, and a bag of sand or cat litter in your trunk can help in an emergency. It only takes one traffic crash to close a roadway for several hours. Being prepared is critical. 

Before you travel, make sure your cell phone is fully charged and keep it with you. Do not use your cell phone when you are driving; park your vehicle well off the roadway or in a parking lot before placing a call. The Missouri State Highway Patrol emergency number is 1-800-525-5555 (or *55 on a cellular phone). These numbers ring at the nearest troop headquarters. We're here to help. 

If you decide it’s necessary to drive in inclement weather, take the time to make sure your vehicle’s windows are completely cleared to ensure visibility. Clear your driveway so your vehicle can enter and exit the roadway more safely. Allow extra driving time for you to reach your destination at a slow, safe speed. Remember: Missouri law states if you’re using your windshield wipers, your headlights must be turned on. It takes only a second to turn on your vehicle’s headlights. That second could make you more visible to other drivers and prevent a traffic crash. 

If you are involved in a crash or slide off the roadway, stay inside your vehicle with your seat belt on. During inclement weather, multiple vehicles often crash or slide off the roadway at the same location. If you are walking around your vehicle, the chances of being injured or killed is much greater. The safest course of action is to contact law enforcement by cell phone and remain inside your vehicle. If there are no injuries in the crash, the vehicles should be moved off the roadway to a safer location while waiting for law enforcement to arrive.

Winter weather affects driving conditions and traffic patterns. Please remember to buckle up, pay attention, be courteous, and obey all traffic laws. Remember: When weather conditions make driving hazardous, drive only when necessary.

The only 100 percent survivable traffic crash is the one that never happens. Make sure everyone in the vehicle is properly restrained in a seat belt or child restraint. Every day as we travel on Missouri’s roadways, we trust that every driver on the road is going to obey the speed limit, pay attention, and drive sober. “Don’t Violate The Trust.”

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