Tuesday, July 22, 2014

KDOT reports pricey winter for roads

By The Herald Staff | 4/2/2014

TOPEKA — This winter was the most costly for the state since 2008, the Kansas Department of Transportation reported Wednesday.

The agency spent an estimated $22 million to keep the roads clear and safe during the winter months, according to a KDOT news release. That amount was spent on materials, labor and equipment usage. KDOT spent $23.7 million in 2008. The 2014 winter costs break down to $8.50 per registered vehicle, the agency said.

“I want to thank our crews for their dedication and hard work to keep Kansas roads open in some very difficult conditions,” Mike King, Kansas transportation secretary, said. “Winter maintenance takes a substantial amount of effort and money, but the cost to the state would be much greater if the crews didn’t maintain the system as well as they did.”

For the 2014 winter season, KDOT crews worked 550,000 hours, used 591 dump trucks and treated and plowed about 2.7 million lane miles, KDOT said. The agency’s maintenance experts said the broad scope of this season’s storms, along with frigid temperatures, combined to make an expensive winter season.

The least amount KDOT has spent on winter maintenance in the past seven years was $6.8 million in 2012. The estimated cost won’t be finalized until June 30.

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