Guidebook for Mechanical Methods for Snow and Ice Control Operations

Winter weather impacts the transportation network across North America; snow and ice control is a prime winter maintenance activity for many state departments of transportation and local agencies. Strategies that employ chemicals (primarily sodium chloride) and/or mechanical means for snow and ice control (e.g., brooming, plowing, scraping, and ice breaking) have been used by state and local agencies to maintain safe and passable roadways during wintertime weather events. Fluctuations in availability and cost of deicing chemicals have often hindered highway agencies’ operation. There are also concerns about the environmental impacts of these chemicals, their contribution to corrosion of motor vehicles, and their adverse effect on longevity of roadway infrastructure. Reducing the dependence on use of chemicals and adopting strategies that rely on mechanical means for snow and ice control operations would yield environmental, economic, and safety benefits. Currently, there are no widely accepted guidelines that address the strategies and practices for using mechanical means for snow and ice control operations. There is a need to identify, review, and evaluate such strategies and practices and develop a guidebook that addresses the different aspects of these operations and the selection of strategies for specific climatic, site, and traffic conditions. Such guidebook will help state departments of transportation personnel in making decisions regarding snow and ice control operations and implementing safe, cost-effective, and environmentally friendly strategies. The objective of this research is to develop a guidebook on the use of mechanical methods for snow and ice control operations.


  • English


  • Status: Completed
  • Funding: $264269
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 06-19

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Cooperative Highway Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO)

    444 North Capitol Street, NW
    Washington, DC  United States  20001

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Khalegi, Bijan

  • Performing Organizations:

    Wilfrid A. Nixon & Associates

    Iowa City, Iowa  United States 
  • Principal Investigators:

    Nixon, Wilfrid

  • Start Date: 20210602
  • Expected Completion Date: 20231231
  • Actual Completion Date: 20231231

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01739648
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 06-19
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: May 20 2020 6:35PM