HELNEA- Department of Transportation is working hard to maintain Montana roads.

It takes 580 plows and around 800 people to maintain 25,000 miles of state roads during the winter. MDT plows traveled those routes 3.6 million miles last year using over 245,000 labor hours.

Last year MDT used 3.3 million gallons of deicer and 6.3 million cubic yards of sand.

Maintenance Business Operations Supervision Brandi Hamilton said people, especially in rural areas, depend on the plows every year.

Story continues below

“We have a lot of commuters in Montana. You know there’s great distance between our cities so sometimes people will travel 60 to 70 miles one way just to commute,” said Hamilton.

MDT also wants to remind travelers to plan extra time in poor conditions and give plows room on the roads.

The plows need to travel slower than posted speeds to effectively work. They pull over to allow for traffic to pass them.

Don’t drive too fast or close behind them, last year MDT saw 30 snow plow collisions.

For more information about MDT services click here.

For up to date information on road conditions click here.

-CORRECTION: This story was updated to reflect more accurate numbers provided by MDT at a later date.