The objectives of this study are to monitor and evaluate the Roadway Weather Information System (RWIS). Six RWIS sites have been installed at locations selected by the Kentucky Department of Highways. Each site includes sensors which measure temperature, precipitation, relative humidity, wind speed, pavement temperature, surface condition, and chemical concentration. The data can be accessed remotely using a Windows-based software program. The data are also stored in a central database for future use.

A preliminary reliability study has been completed for five of the sites, and data are being collected for a more extensive reliability assessment. The accuracy of the atmospheric sensors will be determined through a comparison with National Weather Service records. Data are being collected to compare the pavement sensor readings with observed road conditions. The storm logs of chemical usage will be obtained from the Department of Highways to compare with National Weather Service records and the RWIS database. These data will be used to perform a cost-benefit analysis.

The primary use of the RWIS data during the winter of 1997 - 1998 will be to evaluate the system. In the future, the RWIS will supplement existing sources of information used to make decisions about snow and ice control. The data are expected to increase the efficiency of the snow and ice control operations. Other uses for the weather data are also being considered.

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The contents of this report reflect the views of the authors who are responsible for the facts and accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the University of Kentucky or the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation. The inclusion of manufacturer names atid trade names is for identification purposes and is not to be considered an endorsement.