Idaho is finding the right formula for maintaining roads during the winter. According to ITS International, the technology used by the Idaho Transportation Department is one of the best in America.
ITD is being recognized for cameras it has placed throughout the state. There are about 112 in all, and 22 of them are in eastern Idaho. They're called road weather information stations and they are equipped with cameras and sensors.
"The information from this provides our maintenance crews with an understanding of what conditions are and what they will be in the next several hours," said Public Information Officer, Bruce King.
They also show drivers what road conditions are like every 15 minutes.
"You can look right now and see a picture of U.S. 20 southbound and U.S. 20 northbound. You can also see whether there is snow on the road," he said.
The stations have also allowed the department to monitor and predict storms. It took some time for ITD's staff to find the best use for this data, but now it is an important part of their decision-making process.
"It helps them know what treatments to provide to the roadway and how much," King said.
The department has received 19 national and 18 state awards this year.
"The director of the Idaho Transportation Department is challenging employees to become the best transportation department in the country," King said.
Fourteen states have expressed interest in the cameras, as well as several universities.
If you would like to see cameras in your area, click here http://511.idaho.gov/.