Winter blast hits Salt Lake Valley

Winter blast hits Salt Lake Valley

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KSL Team coverageSnow fell hard in the Salt Lake Valley Friday night, making it tough for drivers to get around. However, one group was ready to help motorists.

Plows were prepped and out in force. UDOT expected the storm to be an overnight battle against Mother Nature.

Friday evening the heaviest snow was from Lehi, northward, up to about Syracuse. While Ogden and Provo saw some, it's not as heavy.

Weatherman Dan Pope says we can expect to see more snow, as this was just the first phase of the storm.

While plows are trying to make the roads safer, the drivers are asking the rest of us to drive smart.

One plow driver said, "Cars passing us on the right, spinning out. We can't control how we throw snow to the right. If we blind them we lose control. You know, there's nothing I can do about that as a snowplow driver. So, it can get pretty hairy and scary out there.

Alan Peterson is with UDOT's Highway Incident Management team. He works to keep the traffic flowing smoother for everybody.

If Santa or you break down on the interstate, or any other state highway near Salt Lake City, he's probably going to get a phone call.

And with lots of snow on the way, his cell phone is fully charged. Peterson says, "When the weather gets bad, it picks up about double for us. The number of accidents increase for the highway patrol, and one of our primary responsibilities is traffic control for their safety, as well as the public."

Lots of slide-offs keep him busy with traffic control, but he's also there to help with flat tires or cars out of gas.

He's just worried about being so close to the highway when he's helping. So when you see him out there, especially when the weather is bad, he wants you to please slow down. "It is risky. You learn to really trust your senses and watch your blind corners as much as you can, but it has its moments where it's a little bit spooky out here."

For more on the weather conditions, go to the related link.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report. Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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