DPW crews prepare for Friday’s winter weather | News


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SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM)– Preparations are underway across western Mass. We wanted to find out what you should keep in mind to plan ahead and stay safe with more snow on the way in a matter of hours.

“It’s kind of a downer because yesterday was super nice out,” said Hannah Faulkner, a UMass Amherst student.

“I’m delighted, can’t wait to get shoveling my driveway, great exercise,” said Peter Vickery of Amherst.

People shared mixed ahead of Friday’s anticipated snowstorm. And doing what they can to stay off the roads.

“Lucky guy, I’ve got a five minute commute from home to office, so I don’t have to do much prep. I’ll probably work from home,” said Vickery.

We checked in with departments of public works across our area about their preparations.

“Check fuel in trucks, all the fluid levels, lights, put the plows on, getting ready,” said Chis Bouchard, director of Public Works for South Hadley.

And with temperatures in the 60’s on Wednesday, we wanted to know how Friday might differ from storms earlier in the season.

“We are in late February so when the sun does come out that helps us with melting and getting it to go away a little quicker,” said Bouchard.

“We’ve had some element of icing mixed in which just means needing to put down material at different times to keep the roads safe,” said Amy Rusiecki.

Rusiecki told us that no school means her crew can commit resources to clearing the roads for the morning work commute.

“Now we’ll shift that focus a little bit more to the downtown area where there might be more pedestrians earlier in the morning,” said Rusiecki

A recent plunge in COVID-19 cases has the DPW assistant superintendent thinking positive about making this cleanup effective and efficient.

“We may be have one staff member out with that right now and we have a couple backups so…I think we’re in a good place,” said Rusiecki.

We also spoke to officials in Greenfield and Westfield, who agreed, no school will be a big help for their crews and they anticipate starting around 1 a.m. as for how to keep yourself safe? Stay off the roads if you can help it and wear bright reflective clothing if you’ll be out plowing or shoveling late at night.

Copyright 2022. Western Mass News (WGGB/WSHM). All rights reserved.

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