City of Springfield Public Works prepares for upcoming winter storm
A wintry mix is expected to begin overnight Tuesday night.
The City of Springfield Public Works Department prepares for winter storms well ahead of time.
Department employees start in the summer making sure the salt dome is full, according to superintendent of streets, Colten Harris. Then they inspect all the trucks, plows and spreaders. They’ll look them over closer to winter and have drivers go over their routes. And then they wait for snow and ice.
Harris said the response can be different based on the weather that’s forecasted. For this weather event, he said, they might not be able to get out ahead of the storm.
"If we know that there's going to be quite a bit of rain before we get snow, we wouldn't necessarily pretreat because all of that salt would just get washed away," he said. "But, if that's not going to be the case and it's just going to be snow, for instance, then that's a situation where we are able to pretreat."
There are 30 plow trucks available, and they’ve used only half of those for the winter weather so far this season.
Harris said it’s been hard to find drivers, but they currently have almost enough for all of their trucks.
"You know, we've got some people that are out. Just in general our staffing is low right now. We have a lot of vacancies," he said, "and, so, it's definitely a challenge."
But Harris said the labor shortage won’t affect their response to this winter storm.
He advises drivers to exercise caution and to go out on the roads only if they have to once the winter precipitation begins falling.