City works overtime to clear streets of snow

As a result of the blizzard that hit Bowling Green a couple weeks ago, mounting snow piles needed to be moved out of the middle of the streets.

The snow was blocking the turn lanes and making visibility difficult for many drivers.

The city’s public works employees sprang into action, working 12-hour shifts to clear the snow from noon on Feb. 13 until 4 p.m. on Feb. 17.

Director of Public Works William Blair said their course of operation was to first get the roads open; second, to get the snow out of parking lots; and lastly to remove access snow from residential areas.

The entire operation took 94 hours. All together, 24 full-time and part-time public works employees and three supervisors put in 798 hours of overtime. This would have cost the city $21,654.76, had all the employees taken overtime pay.

With the cost of the salt, the city spent an additional $14,892.50 on 350 tons, paying $42.55 per ton.

The snow was moved to the Wood County Fairgrounds parking lot, since it was the shortest haul, and the location is rarely used outside of August.

An extra five workers were needed for the snow removal to operate two backhoes from the Electrical Division, two trucks from the Water and Sewer Division and a truck from the wastewater treatment plant.

“The crew did very well,” said Lori Tretter, the city’s public affairs officer.

She tips her hat to the public works employees for working hard around the clock for so many hours.

When asked whether or not the University’s President’s Day Open House was a factor in the quick cleanup, Blair responded that the goal is always to remove the snow as quickly as possible regardless of that upcoming event.

Even so, David Rice, assistant director of admissions, was pleased with the quickness and efficiency with which the snow was removed. He thinks the drifts of snow would have obstructed the parking lots on the east side of the football stadium and made navigation extremely difficult.

“When you have 2,036 students coming to visit, it helps,” Rice said.