Tulsa Traffic May Be Smoother After Snow, But Officials Urge Caution

Monday, March 3rd 2014, 6:09 pm
By: News On 6

Traffic seemed to be running a little smoother Monday evening, after the sun came out. That gave a little bit of relief for the Oklahoma Department of Transportation crews. But Monday morning, traveling on some Tulsa area highways was a bit tricky.

Green Country was covered in a blanket of snow, but that didn't stop drivers from hitting the roads.

3/3/2014 Related Story: Crews Work To Clear Snow Covered Roads Across Northeastern Oklahoma

"I'm meeting my daughter, so we thought we'd meet halfway," said driver Carol Little.

Little was among the hundreds driving on the snowy morning. She said her drive from Cleveland started off great.

"As soon as I hit the highway, it was just clear. That one lane, the right hand lane, was just perfect," Little said.

But the closer she got to Tulsa the worse the roads got.

"The slush I was in, it was, you know. Sand Springs just blew my mind because I thought they'd be better, and they didn't have the left lane cleared as well," Little said.

ODOT is responsible for clearing all highways and interstates in Oklahoma. The Turnpikes are taken care of by the turnpike authority. In the Tulsa area, 42 ODOT plows are in rotation.

ODOT Spokesperson Brenda Perry said they focus primarily on clearing one lane at a time, but sometimes that doesn't happen.

"It was just slush. I just thought they'd have it better," said Little.

Tire tracks can sometimes be misleading, causing some to drive in two lanes at one time. Some people encountered spots where not a single lane was clear.

Perry said this happened because, even after the highways are plowed, there are still patches of ice that won't disappear until the sun melts it away. Still, she urges drivers to be cautious, so they don't end up sliding off the road.

"I did drive slow and I noticed there was quite a lot of traffic that stayed behind me, so I'd speed up a little bit more and they just kept staying behind me and the snow plow was in front of me," Little said.

Even though the snow and ice is melting, ODOT is concerned that the slushy leftovers will freeze again causing some more trouble for the Tuesday morning commute.