Transportation

Battling the Northeast Blizzard With Intelligent Weather

The Northeast Blizzard brought record snow totals to the northeastern United States in February of 2013, with some areas receiving up to three feet of snow over a 46 hour time period. The city of Boston received 24.9 inches during the storm, one of the highest totals ever recorded in the city. To show the extent of this storm, the Governor put a travel ban into effect on all Massachusetts’s 15,000 miles of road.

In order to assure roadways were cleared quickly and safely, the Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) relied on Schneider Electric’s top-rated temperature and precipitation forecasts. With the detailed, location-specific forecasts, the agency knew exactly where and when the snow would fall and could assure contracted plowing services were available. With reliable pavement forecasts, the agency also was able to begin planning road pre-treatments.

“We have a lot of vendors that do plowing for us, and we were able to make sure that they were aware of what was coming and that we were going to be using them,” said Scott Wilson, director of roadway operations at MassDOT. “We were able to have equipment ready where we needed it most.”

MassDOT found a partner in this storm with Schneider Electric’s experienced meteorologists, who provided updates every other hour during the storm, plus were available for questions online, 24/7.

Focused planning and intelligent weather information supported the effective post-storm cleanup, with the road travel ban lifted just two days after the storm had passed.  Hats off to the MassDOT for getting the state back up and running in no time!

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