PennDOT to study extreme weather vulnerability of state’s transportation system

Updated Dec 3, 2015

severe winter weatherThe Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) is planning a long-term study of the preparedness level the state’s transportation system for extreme weather conditions.

“We’re preparing for the future by studying where our assets have risks or vulnerabilities to flooding and other effects of intense storms,” PennDOT Secretary Leslie Richards said in a press conference.

PennDOT wants to use the study to “increase the resiliency of . . . assets and adopt strategies into planning, design and operations to allow PennDOT to successfully cope with severe weather events.”

The study will be begin by documenting historic weather impacts on the state’s road and bridge network, as well as identifying potential future impacts. The stude will be completed by September next year.

As part of this process, PennDOT plans to involve officials with various “stakeholders” involved in extreme weather events, including emergency management.

PennDOT also plans to use the study to aide in emergency management planning and data sharing, which officials at the local and state level could use for creating response plans for future weather events.

The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) tested its own winter weather readiness with a statewide drill earlier this month that simulated a forecast for “significant snow” across the state. the similation involved more than 3,500 MoDOT employees.