Getting the ‘green light’ for snowplows

  • Published
  • By Eric Hoehn
  • 88th Air Base Wing Safety Office

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Oh -- With cold weather upon us and snow on the way, it’s time to get your mind and vehicle prepared for winter-weather driving. It’s good to know the Ohio Department of Transportation is doing the same.

According to ODOT’s website, it’s prepared to fight the elements with 3,000 snowplows throughout the state. These plows are equipped with a green strobe light and white lights attached to the rear, designed to reduce the likelihood of rear-end collisions.

In large part, this preventive measure was put in place due to Ohio having four times the number of rear-end collisions as neighboring states.

With Ohio now mandating the use of rear-snowplow lights to help make the vehicles more visible, ODOT also wants to remind motorists not to “crowd the plow” and offers these safety precautions:

  • Keep your distance: Give snowplows room to work.
  • Beware of “snow cloud”: If you pass a snowplow, take extreme caution. The plow often creates a cloud of snow and ice that can be hard to see through.
  • See and be seen: Because the equipment is so large, a snowplow operator’s field of vision is restricted. You may see them, but they don’t always see you. Keep your distance and watch for sudden stops.

It’s your responsibility as a driver to be on the lookout for snowplows and any other potential hazards.

By keeping these precautions in mind, we can reduce the amount of rear-end collisions around the state, making your winter-weather drive and the snowplow operator’s shifts a little safer.

For more information, visit the Ohio Department of Transportation’s website at

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base
5135 Pearson Road, Building 10
Wright-Patterson AFB, OH 45433