Dealing with slippery entrance and exit ramps

Wednesday, December 10th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

One of the worst problem traffic areas with Tuesday night’s snow and ice was a strip of road in south Tulsa. We’re talking about the entrance ramp from 71st Street to Highway 169, where it was rough going.

News on 6 reporter Steve Berg says that location has never been a favorite intersection, because it's so busy, but you add the white stuff, and we're talking serious snow woes. And just think, it's still autumn.

It was an uphill battle for people who tried to climb onto Highway 169 from 71st Street Wednesday morning, where even a modest incline was enough to give people the slip.

Gary Evans with the Oklahoma Department of Transportation: "Our crews were down there and I guess it's an uphill ramp and citizens were having trouble making it up that ramp.”

Why then, people might wonder, don't they treat the ramps? Well, Department of Transportation officials say road crews make the main highway their first priority and they do go back and plow the ramps afterward, but sometimes, they say, it takes time to get back to them all.

"Our focus at the time is on the main lines and a lot of the time, the ramps, although we would like to be able to get those, we just don't have enough crews to get everything at the same time."

Motorists who tried to save time by cutting around found it cost them dearly, as old man winter gave them a cold shoulder.

Road crews normally have about 20 trucks on hand. They brought another nine trucks up from Oklahoma City for this storm. But it's still tough to keep up with all that snow.