With winter weather always a concern in Missouri during November through March, travelers and commuters need to know the latest conditions before hitting the roads.
The installation’s snow and ice removal program — referred to as SNAIR — has various methods in place to keep people informed of treacherous travel and weather-related information.
During winter weather conditions, the Maneuver Support Center of Excellence and Fort Leonard Wood Installation Operations Center coordinate SNAIR to ensure the safety of personnel and minimal impact to training and other missions, said Troy Carney, Installation Emergency manager.
“The purpose of SNAIR is to keep everyone aware of current road conditions, manage removal of snow and ice and get the installation back to normal as soon as safely possible,” he said.
SNAIR is a cooperative effort between the installation’s garrison directorates, and mission and brigade assets, and is facilitated by the IOC. Compiled weather information is provided via several venues, and drivers can check road conditions before operating their vehicles.
Fort Leonard Wood’s Facebook page — www.facebook.com/fortleonardwood missouri/ — is typically updated the fastest regarding road conditions, facility closures or official announcements.
“Road conditions on post are broken down by color-coded definitions to quickly tell drivers what to expect as the weather changes,” Carney said.
In addition to Facebook, the Fort Leonard Wood Weather Alerts page — https://home.army.mil/wood/index.php/about/Garrison/weather — is updated at 5 a.m. every day year-round and as weather conditions change.
“On that web page, drivers can access facility closures, current road conditions, status of primary parking lots and more,” Carney added.
The phone line is also updated daily at 5 a.m. and as weather conditions change, and the recorded message can be heard by calling 573.563.4141. However, this line can get easily inundated with incoming calls and will not allow Watch Office personnel to update the message.
“I’d advise people not to call this line during the last 15 minutes of the hour so that we can provide you the most up-to-date conditions,” Carney said.
An update this season to the post’s mass notification system allows commuters to get updated weather information pushed to them by way of their smartphone. The new ALERT! system is the preferred method of publishing any severe weather-related information. This feature is available to all CAC users as well as family members, long-term contractors, private organizations or tenants on the installation.
In addition, several local radio and television stations in Lebanon, Rolla, St. Robert and Waynesville usually carry information on road conditions and post operations. Another avenue of information is the Missouri Department of Transportation web page, traveler.modot.org/map/. Visitors to this site can click on the traveler info map and the icon for traffic cameras on the left of the page, and can then select an area of I-44 to view live.
“They have cameras nearly all over the state, so you can actually get a visual right outside Rolla, Lebanon, Waynesville and St. Robert,” Carney said.
(Editor’s note: Troy Carney, Fort Leonard Wood Operations Center, contributed to this article.)