After an epic winter in the Sierras, CalTrans crews have the monumental task of clearing mountain passes that are cover in up to 20 feet of snow. According to CBS Bay Area CalTrans crews have been working over the last two months clearing miles of roadway and with two weeks before the official start of summer, crews are working around-the-clock using every asset possible including wires embedded in the center of the highway to keep everyone on track.
CalTrans has embedded one such wire near Sonora Pass which crews electrify to detect it. Caltrans public information officer, Rick Estrada, explained the process:
“We walked down the middle of the road, and we can read the current through the detector. So, as I’m walking up the hill, the bulldozers behind me are clearing a wide swath. After that bulldozer clears the road, everyone knows this is the center of the road.”
The line helps crews stay safe in dangerous conditions and serve as low impact environmentally friendly markers:
“It’s very steep. There’s lots of slopes and with that current, that allows us to keep everything towards the center and safety is always a big deal with us. So, whatever we can do to keep it safer, we’re headed that direction.”
Crews expect to have all roads clear by July. Thanks CalTrans!
[image from napavalleyregister.com]