MnDOT not cutting back on snow plows despite rising gas prices

(ABC 6 News) – Hundreds of snow plows are put on the road every winter in Minnesota and despite rising gas prices, MnDOT says it can’t cut back on the number it uses because it’s a safety issue.

Mike Dougherty with MnDOT District 6 tells ABC 6 News, MnDOT buys gas in bulk and in the off-season. Which ultimately leads to lower prices. Every year there’s a balance between balancing different costs and this year, is no different.

“You know, when there’s a forecast for snow or ice, our snow plows will be out because that is their duty. So we won’t compromise that because of costs,” said Dougherty.

“There’s a job to do and it affects the roads in different ways, but it’s all about safety.”

MnDOT is cutting back on expenses in other areas like using less salt. Employees are also using electric vehicles or carpooling to meetings.

“That is one of the opportunities that we look at. It may cut down on our fuel consumption. There might be different things with electricity and those costs. but those might be less than the fuel costs.”

Despite rising costs, Dougherty said MnDOT is still looking to hire emergency snow plow drivers this winter.