Getting Answers: How supply chain issues are impacting local DPWs | News


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SOUTH HADLEY, MA (WGGB/WSHM)–After a number of storms this season, how could supply chain issues and salt shortages affect snow cleanup?

Supply chain issues have affected countless industries throughout the pandemic, snowplow drivers are no exception. We spoke with local departments of public works about how that will affect their cleanup efforts ahead of tomorrow’s storm and beyond.

“You can’t quite see in the salt shed but it’s pretty empty at this point,” said Amy Rusiecki, assistant superintendent of the Amherst Department of Public Works.

Old man winter is back in western Mass. and with its return, Amy Rusiecki explainedhow supply chain issues is impacting her crew’s cleanup efforts.

“We’ve run into a lot of hurdles with trying to get salt in…Make a call and not get it delivered or maybe we order five trucks and we only get two trucks in,” she said.

meanwhile in South Hadley, Chris Bouchard has been more fortunate with his equipment orders.

“Whether it’s lights or cutting edges for plows, sander chains, when we use one we just try to replace it to keep it in stock so we make sure we have one when we need it,” said Bouchard.

And salt orders, which begin the day after a storm.

“We just try to stay right on top of ordering salt after the last storm we try to replenish,” said Bouchard.

while Rusiecki anticipates having enough salt to last through Friday’s storm, even if the roads are treated multiple times, there could be plenty of icy nights before the end of the season.

“We’re at least confident that even if we don’t get stuff in, we will be able to manage the freeze thaw cycle that’s gonna be coming pretty quickly now that we’re almost into march,” said Rusiecki.

With a backup supply ready to roll…

“We have some additional salt, kind of a rainy day amount stored on the north end of town in another salt shed,” said Rusiecki.

With the brunt of winter behind us, the salt shed won’t be empty for long.

“Luckily we’re at the tail end of the season so then we can work throughout the spring to fill up everything and be prepared for next year.”

Amherst has a parking ban that goes into effect from midnight to 7 a.m. Thursday evening, Rusiecki said that’s when they’ll be towing cars, outside of those hours, she said parking in your driveway or designated spots downtown will go a long way towards cleanup efforts.

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

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