Farrell High School, Mercer High School

OIL CITY, Pa. (WKBN) — The Northwest Region of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation recently announced the winners of District 1 of the Paint the Plow safety contest.

Farrell High School in Mercer County won the “Fan Favorite” award determined by an online vote through PennDOT’s website. The plow represents melting ice falling onto a mobile phone which has a generic prohibition symbol on the screen to convey this year’s theme of ‘Empty device in snow and ice’.

West Middlesex High School was the honorable mention.

Students were invited to paint a plow blade with an original design based on a given theme. This year’s theme is “Empty your device during snow and ice” to raise awareness that drivers need to keep their full attention on driving and avoid distractions like cell phones, especially during winter weather events.

Members of the public were invited to vote for their favorite plow from 11 regional high schools that participated in this year’s regional competition. Votes were accepted November 14-20. Farrell High School received 505 of the 2,671 votes for the title of “Fan Favorite.”

The winner of the Judges’ Pick award was Mercer High School, also in Mercer County. The students’ mural features a broken phone surrounded by app logos and text messages, amid writing that reads “Put device in snow and ice.”

Farrell High School also received an honorable mention in the Judges’ Pick category, as determined by PennDOT representatives.

During the winter weather season, the winning blades, as well as blades painted by other participating schools, are used to maintain state-owned roads in the six counties in PennDOT’s northwest region. Photos of all District 1 plows can be viewed on the PennDOT website.

Other event participants were:

  • Commodore Perry High School
  • Eisenhower Intermediate
  • Oil City High School, Rocky Grove High School
  • Sheffield Area Middle School
  • Warren High School
  • Youngsville High School

Paint the Plow is a collaboration between PennDOT and area high schools aimed at promoting winter driving safety and encouraging student appreciation for arts programs and creativity.

Mercer High School was the winner of the "choice of judge"
Mercer High School plow design (courtesy PennDOT)