To get the job done, Penfield DPW has 18 plow routes and four sidewalk plow routes. All Town plow trucks are equipped with a main front plow blade, wing plow on the side of the truck, and salt spreader. Salt spreaders are calibrated and computer automated allowing roads to be salted as efficiently as possible. The Town’s sidewalk plow tractors have interchangeable V-plows and snowblowers to clear snow depending on the need/depth/quantity.
Operating a plow truck is nothing like jumping in your vehicle and getting on your way. Hours of certification classes, special training programs, and a commercial driver’s license are needed to ensure the safe and efficient operation of the snow clearing machines.
Plows hit the roads in the early morning hours, often before 3 a.m. to clear assigned routes and make hundreds of lane miles of roads passable when winter weather strikes. A typical route takes about four hours to complete depending on conditions. The process is completed as needed based on weather conditions.
Over the past several weeks the snow and cold, which at times has seemed relentless, has kept plow drivers in Penfield and across the region busy. Plow runs have been frequent, with roughly 4,500 tons of salt spread this winter season, to ensure roads are passable for not only Penfield residents but all commuting within the Town.
“It was a slow start to winter but it has definitely picked up,” said Eric Tait, Director of Public Works. “Our crews have done a great job in tough conditions.”
It’s the type of work that often goes unnoticed but is critical to keep the Town functioning. Without plow drivers, roads throughout Penfield would slow to a crawl during winter weather events. Whether it is first responders answering emergency calls or buses transporting area students to school, keeping roads clear is essential work.
“We greatly appreciate the work of our DPW,” said Town Supervisor Marie Cinti. “The work they do is vital to the success and safety of our community.”
When sharing the roads with plows, allow the plows space to work. Remember, don’t crowd the plow.
For additional information on Town of Penfield snow management, click here.