"The Road" Newsletter -- November 2022

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November 2022 | Volume 12 | Issue 11 | Bookmark and Share

Road Commission hosts 2022 APWA Roadeo

2022 Snowplow Roadeo Coopersville

ABOVE: Road Commission drivers participate in the Snowplow Roadeo obstacle course. MIDDLE: OCRC Board Chairman Tom Elhart participates in the celebrity driving portion of the Roadeo. BELOW: Vendor booths were set up in the garage area of the Coopersville facility as part of the event.

Tom Elhart Roadeo

The Ottawa County Road Commission hosted this year's American Public Works Association Snowplow Roadeo on Oct. 12 at its Coopersville maintenance garage.

The highlight of the event is a competitive obstacle course designed to simulate actual snow plowing driving operations. Drivers are timed and scored for accuracy, safety, and speed.

The course is laid out with cones and barrels to challenge the driver’s ability to operate a plow truck through stations that simulate maneuvering around parked cars, inside and outside curves, diminishing clearance, offset intersections, serpentine areas, and backing into a loading dock.

2022 Snowplow Roadeo Garage

The competition also includes an educational component. 

Competitors from each team of two drivers complete the course independently and the scores are combined for a team total.

The Ottawa County Road Commission drivers who participated in this year's Roadeo include:

Grand Haven Garage: 
Rich Johnson & Rob Berens

Coopersville Garage: 
Ken McBride & Chad Horling

North Holland Garage:
Ryan Alman & Zach Neumann

Hudsonville Garage:
Eric Nagelkirk & Tim Nagelkirk

The Road Commission also had celebrity participants from the Road Commission, the Ottawa County Board of Commissioners, state government and communities in the West Michigan area.

The OCRC is proud of all of our teams' and drivers' accomplishments at this year's Roadeo, as well as those who helped volunteer to put on the event at our Coopersville facility.

Wrapping up the 2022 construction season

Lakewood Blvd. Paving - Holland Township

ABOVE: Crews pave Lakewood Blvd. in Holland Twp. BELOW: Work crews work on the Byron Rd. bridge in Zeeland Twp.

As we begin to wind down toward the end of 2022, our 2022 OCRC road construction season is also drawing to a close.

In 2022, the OCRC performed work on nearly 126 miles of road surface in Ottawa County. This work ranged from a complete reconstruction of a road, to various resurfacing projects, as well regraveling gravel roads.

The Road Commission is very appreciative of the support by local Townships and from
county residents who approved the countywide road millage. This millage has provided a great
deal of support in our efforts to improve and maintain roads in the county this year, in addition
to the traditional funding sources, such as the Michigan Transportation Fund (MTF).

Byron Rd. Bridge Repair

Here’s a complete breakdown of this past construction season’s investments:

Primary Road Improvements:
Miles: 24
MTF: $3,042,148
Federal Aid: $4,939,996
Millage: $5,183,839
Total: $13,165,963

Local Paved Road Improvements:
Miles: 8.7
MTF: $873,496
Township Contributions: $540,228
Millage: $929,511
Total: $2,343,235

Subdivision Street Improvements:
Miles: 30.1
Township Contributions: $5,626,520
Total: $5,626,520

Seal Coat Surfacing:
Miles: 54.9
MTF: $1,579,834.21
Total: $1,579,834.21

Miles: 8.3
MTF: $216,000
Township Contributions: $216,000
Total: $432,000

Remember to watch for deer this autumn!

Deer safety

Did you know that each year, there are nearly 50,000 reported vehicle-deer crashes in Michigan?

About 80 percent of these crashes occur on two-lane roads between dusk and dawn. The most serious crashes occur when motorists swerve to avoid a deer and hit another vehicle or a fixed object, or when their vehicle rolls over.

Here are some tips to avoid a crash:

  • Stay aware, awake, and sober.
  • Be especially alert for deer in spring and fall.
  • Deer are herd animals that frequently travel in single file. If you see one deer cross the road, chances are there are more waiting.
  • Be alert for deer, especially at dawn and dusk. If you see one, slow down.
  • Don't rely on gimmicks such as flashing your high-beam headlights or honking your horn to deter deer.

If a crash is unavoidable:

  • Don't swerve. Brake firmly, hold onto the steering wheel, and bring your vehicle to a controlled stop.
  • Pull off the road, turn on your emergency flashers, and be cautious of other traffic if you exit your vehicle.
  • Report the crash to the nearest police agency and your insurance company.

Remember to buckle up, as seat belts are motorists' best defense in the event of a crash.

OCRC Text Update Graphics

Want to get weekly updates on OCRC road work during the construction season?

Text Ottawa Roads to GOV-311 (468-311) to receive weekly construction updates via text message.

You can also sign up for all the news from the Ottawa County Road Commission via email here.