Snowplow Warning Light

Res #: 8-09A
Number: 8
Year: 2009
Midterm: No
Expired: Yes
Responses Received: No

WHEREAS the visibility of snowplows is reduced when snowplowing roads and is a safety hazard to motorists; and 

WHEREAS snowplows in the province are identified by an amber light that is not visible in swirling snow; 

BE IT RESOLVED that SARM lobby the Provincial Government to identify snowplows by a light that has a greater degree of visibility than an amber light.

Response from Honourable D. Wayne Elhard, Minister of Highways and Infrastructure:

The Ministry of Highways and Infrastructure utilizes several types of lights and lamps for visibility of our snowplows.  The Ministry has investigated the use of red and blue flashing lights; however in Saskatchewan, only law enforcement/emergency vehicles are permitted to use this lighting configuration.

The Ministry has an active Snowplow Accident Review Committee (SPARC) that is investigating solutions to improve visibility of our snowplows.  The committee has several initiatives underway.  Some of these include: 

Ø       Trials using a high intensity rotating amber light (250,000 candle watt)
Ø       Trials using a pilot vehicle to shadow the snowplow and provide advanced warning to motorists of snowplow operations ahead.
Ø       Installation of wind scoops and high reflectivity checkerboards on the rear of all snowplows.  The checkerboards improve the visibility of the snowplow while the wind scoop keeps the checkerboards and other lights on the rear of the plow truck clean and free from snow cover. 

The Ministry employs, on a continual basis, an advertising campaign promoting safe driving practices around snowplows.