Kansas City's mild winter in 2011 leaves KDOT more than ready for 2012's first snowfall

The Kansas Department of Transportation has a head start on winter supplies since last year's winter in Kansas City was so mild

KDOT officials in Olathe have 30 dump trucks and more than 50 employees prepared to clear more than 1,000 miles of roadway in Johnson County in case snow falls Thursday morning.

The weather was so mild last winter that the department used just 500 tons of salt, and was able to store 9,500 tons of salt to use this year.

If it snows in Kansas Thursday morning, KDOT employees will work 12-hour shifts. Their goal is to keep roadways clear, especially during peak hours in the morning and evening.

The extra salt stored from last year will help, says Drake Jennings, a maintenance supervisor for KDOT.

"Usually we're calling and trying to get salt delivered. This is a rushed time of year but last year was so mild that we used only 500 tons of salt so it helped us out tremendously budget-wise and I'm sure the traveling public enjoyed it too", he explained.

Jennings says drivers need to allow twice as much time to get to work if it snows. He added drivers should make sure they have jumper cables, blankets, gloves, ice scrapers and extra windshield fluid in their car just in case.

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