SALYERSVILLE – Winter is not over, yet, despite what the groundhog predicts, but the score is set 1-0, with the Magoffin Department of Highways in the lead over snow and ice.
Starting last Friday and continuing through the weekend, roughly four inches of snow, with some ice mixed in, was dumped on Magoffin, but roads remained travelable.
Road Foreman Steve Howard attributes their success to the dedication of the drivers.
“We take pride in getting our roads clean,” Howard said. “We got a lot of good reports, and we appreciate it, but it just comes down to our personnel. We have excellent drivers and these guys know what they’re doing. They know how to get a road clean.”
Starting before bad weather hits, Howard said the key is constant preventative maintenance.
“When trucks go down, we’re going to have roads snowed over,” he said. “We have to be ready for the next snow, so we keep our trucks maintained.”
Though most may avoid the roads when bad weather hits, the 16 personnel – split into two crews for the six trucks – stay out until their routes are clear, from pre-treating with the salt brine to keep the snow and ice from bonding to the road, to scraping out paths for travelers.
“There are routes for each truck and the drivers take that route as their own,” Howard said. “We know what we got to do and we make snow and ice a priority in winter so people can travel. We take that to heart. If something is happening on their route, they want to be out there.”
While so far Magoffin has had a fairly mild winter, Saturday and Sunday, alone, the Highway Department personnel clocked over 24 hours of overtime to keep the roads safe for drivers.
With an eye on the sky, Howard said they hope to maintain their record of staying ahead of the storm.