Dec 28, 2009 6:50 pm US/Mountain CDOT To Enforce Reduced Plowing On Rural Road Reporting Andrea Lopez CBS Some Colorado residents might see fewer plows on the road the next time it snows. Money problems have the state and one city changing snow removal plans. The Colorado Department of Transportation is going to reduce plowing on rural roads and Colorado Springs will keep plows parked under certain conditions. CDOT's plan means some 2,800 miles of rural roads will go unplowed at night and Colorado Springs will only focusing on major roads in town unless there's more than six inches of snow. Both moves are designed to save money. New signs went up drawing attention to the policy, which has actually been in place for a year now. But with budget restrictions, CDOT plans to really enforce it this winter to make sure that money is not being spent on products and employee overtime to treat roads that are less traveled, focusing its efforts on major routes like interstates. People who travel the more rural Highway 36 east say it can be a tough maneuver in storms. "If it's not plowed it's like a skating rink out there," a driver told CBS4. It's a route people use to get to and from home and to access nearby Interstate 70. It's also included in the roadways that won't be plowed from 7 p.m. until 5 a.m. because it's less traveled. "Basically highways with less than 1,000 vehicles a day," Stacey Stegman with CDOT said. "We're not going to spend all this money on overtime and product on highways that very few people are traveling in the overnight hours." Having several hundred million cut from its budget, CDOT says it has to tighten its belt. Plowing costs just under $5 a mile. "When you consider though that usually you have to plow multiple times and there are multiple lanes on a highway, it adds up, Stegman said. "We spend about $40 million a year on snow removal." Some locals feel CDOT has done a great job. "I think CDOT does a fantastic job out here. The highway is pretty good, they keep our county road pretty clear," a woman said. But some fear what they might wake up to as CDOT shifts its resources. "It's going to be harder for those of us who live on 36 to get out of our driveways," said a woman who lives on Highway 36. The less-traveled routes that will get less attention are all outside of the Denver metro area. CDOT says it will plow less-traveled roads if they are routes to schools or hospitals, and in major blizzards, will also plow them to prevent them from closing. Several lawmakers have drafted a letter asking transportation officials, as well as the governor, to continue to send plows out to more rural areas due to safety concerns. http://firstname.lastname@example.org Just wondering if any fellow bc'ers have these type of cutbacks in their states? For me, this is a definite safety concern as once the plows do start all they do is scrape off the snow but leave the hardpacked snow and possibly ice on the roadway. (only put down cinders, sand, no salt) There are 3 DOT areas on my route but each is trying to cover 100's of miles of road. The wind gusts can become quite high 50 - 60 MPH and have in the past pushed the package car, while on hardpack/ice, into the oncoming traffic lane and once almost turning pc 45 degrees. This is on 2 laned roads with speed limits of 65MPH. When conditions are like this I have decreased my speed to 30 -35 MPH but under these conditions even these reductions are of little value.