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Assessing Effectiveness of Friction as a Performance Management Tool in Colorado

Started: March, 2019 End Date: December, 2022 Project ID #4W7842 Status: Ongoing


The objective of this project is to assist CDOT in assessing the feasibility of using friction as a performance management tool in winter maintenance operations. If using friction as a performance management tool is determined to be feasible, an implementation plan will be developed, as well as a training tool for winter maintenance practitioners.


Building off of the success of work from other transportation agencies, such as the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD), and preliminary work for the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), CDOT would like to use friction as a key indicator in a performance management tool for winter maintenance operations. At present, CDOT has conducted significant research in the use of friction as a viable option to assess winter road conditions and has collected an abundance of friction data (Walsh, 2016; Akin et al., in press). However, the connection has not been made between the friction values from the road surface and how these can systematically relate to CDOT policies for road treatments, plowing cycles, operations scheduling, and chain restrictions, to name a few. To help support CDOT in achieving this, this research effort will build off the past work analyzing linking friction data to create an implementation plan for friction as a performance management tool in winter maintenance operations.


Sponsors & Partners

  • Colorado Department of Transportation Sponsor

Part of: Cold Climate Operations & Systems

Project Tagged In: winter maintenance, friction testing

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