California Department of Transportation

California Department of Transportation

Date: January 30, 2015
District: Headquarters
Contact:  Tamie McGowen
Phone:(916) 657-5060

Caltrans avalanche crews use science and technology to keep
mountain highways open and safe for motorists

STOCKTON – When heavy snow piles on steep mountain highways in California, Caltrans calls on its avalanche crews to avert potential disaster and keep motorists moving.

These crews utilize high- and low-tech solutions to break up snowpacks before they become unstable. After the snow is dislodged, plows quickly remove it and the highway opens.

Who are these trusted few who keep the mountain roads safe for residents, travelers and businesses, and what tools do they use to thwart wicked winter storms? This Caltrans News Flash video provides a brief look into their work:
This is the 15th in a series of Caltrans News Flash videos that present the wide-ranging and critical work Caltrans does to keep California moving. To see more of these and other videos, search for #CaltransNewsFlash on Twitter or go to

Motorists can get information on specific highway conditions from the Caltrans QuickMap at or by telephone at 1-800-427-ROAD (7623).

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