With winter weather approaching  officials from MoDOT are taking a stance of better safe than sorry and preparing for the worst.

MoDOT’s annual statewide winter weather drill is set for Thursday and will put crews and equipment through the motions.

The drill, according to MoDOT, is critical this year considering recent high turnover and many of the positions still unfilled.

Director Patrick McKenna estimates the worker shortage, department-wide, to be around 30-percent which will stretch crews thin and create delays when it comes to clearing the roadways “We like to have operators out on a clear day…with the sun shining…to basically dress up the truck. Get to feel what it’s like to drive with all that additional snow equipment on the truck and actually get out and drive the routes they will be assigned to for the season…just drive their entire cycle, so they know what they’ll be doing when the snow actually does fall.”

The Thursday drill, will begin with crews being deployed at 8-am, around 9-am, and should be wrapped up by around 3-pm.