BOARDMAN, Ohio (WKBN) — Treating roads during a winter storm could seem like a simple task, but there are a lot of preparations that go into making that happen.
Road crews stress how important it is to meet the demands of people wanting their neighborhoods and or business parking lots plowed.
“They’re slippery, but it’s winter in Ohio,” said Jim Jenkins of Boardman.
Jenkins was out on the road Sunday with many other drivers during the winter storm.
“When you get snow like this all day, I think everybody is doing their best to keep up on them,” Jenkins said.
Plow truck drivers were out treating roads and making them as safe as possible for drivers. With a snow storm like Sunday’s, crews said it’s hard to keep up.
The average work day could be up to 20 hours.
“It’s pretty normal when you get this much snow. Once you get everything cleaned up, mostly, you’re going around salting, because you’ll have refreeze tonight,” said Mark Dixon, owner of Western Reserve Enterprise.
Dixon noted that there’s a lot of preparation that goes into treating the roads.
“We watch the weather, 27 News! If it’s going to get bad, we make sure all the trucks are in working order. We grease them, take care of them, fill them all up with fuel, then get the guys home and tell them to rest, because they’re not going to sleep for a while,” said Dixon. “Our guys are usually running about 20 hours straight with no sleep. We try to pull them in after that. It’s really hard on the trucks and on the equipment and people are screaming for us. There are people calling us that never call. So we keep pretty busy.”
Even when the roads are treated, Jenkins said he still takes his time.
“I’m used to driving in a lot worse snow than this. If everybody just goes slow, takes it easy and watches out for each other, it’s really not that bad,” said Jenkins.
Dixon sais it’s better for the trucks to treat the roads at night.
“It’s good to have them out at night, we like midnight turn plowing because the cars aren’t out. It’s a lot safer and easier. During the day time like today, my trucks were all out but the cars, they see us as a regular car, they don’t see us as trucks that are backing up and going forward. It’s hard to see behind them. They are big trucks,” said Dixon.
If they can’t wait until night falls because of extreme weather conditions, they will take care of roads on demand. Dixon also said that new technology will soon be available that will show them which roads have been plowed, and which ones still need to be serviced.
Road crews said the toughest part of having a snow removal business is the scheduling, and making sure drivers get enough sleep. Plow trucks are out for hours making sure that roads are as safe as possible for drivers.