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Local roads agency prepared for snowstorms

Mike Desmond/WBFO News

The head of a local agency that monitors area roadways believes the region is more ready than ever to deal with snow.

The agency, Nittec, was founded 20 years ago to boost safety and efficient travel on local roadways. Executive  Director Athena Hutchins says that since last "Snowvember," Nittec has been working more closely with numerous state and local agencies and first responders to ensure a comprehensive plan is in place to deal with winter storms.

Hutchins notes more gates are being installed on entrance and exit ramps to keep traffic off major roadways during severe weather.

"Some of the gates on the 90 and the 190 were put in after a storm a couple of years ago," says Hutchins. "There's newer gates going on 219, Route 400 and Route 5 right now. So, they've been going up over the past several months and more are still to come."

Hutchins says they're also working on installing signs for detours and creating staging areas to provide truck drivers a place to wait out storms. She notes they learn something new after every big event.