Episode 57: Keep your snowplow in service through defensive driving

By February 18, 2022Podcasts

When a snowplow is involved in a crash there can be injuries to drivers and other motorists as well as damage to the snowplow that can take it out of service. In winter some agencies can experience up to 10% reductions in equipment and operators. To help address this Montana DOT advanced a project through Clear Roads Pooled Fund Project to look at the causes of crashes involving snowplows and develop a training program to help operators hone their defensive driving and safe driving skills when operating snowplows.

Doug McBroom, Operations Manager for the Montana DOT discusses a project funded by the Clear roads Pooled Fund Study that looked at the types of crashes impacting snowplows and suggested strategies that made their way into a training program for snowplow operators. The Virginia Tech Transportation Institute conducted surveys and analysis of snowplow crashes and created two easy to implement training programs that are available to all DOT’s and public works agencies. You can check out this work the training programs by visiting the Clear Roads website at You can contact Doug McBroom directly by email at if you would like to discuss any aspect of this program.

The research team at VTTI authored a paper describing this work and submitted it to PIARC’s 16th World Winter Service and Road Resilience Congress Feb 2022 where it was presented. The US National Committee evaluated all the papers from US authors. This paper won the award in the winter service category. The full paper can be viewed at this link: Developing Comprehensive Defensive Driving Training for Snowplow Operators