Plow crews ready for first snowfall of the new year


Snow on the streets is Central Illinois' way of saying, "Happy New Year."

"Great," Julie Parks of Julie's Snow Removal says with a laugh. "What a way to start off the year."

Park's plow and truck were ready to roll.

"As soon as I get the call, I'll probably be out until everything's completely clear and done, so it'll be an all nighter," Park said.

And she's not the only one who expected to work through the night this holiday.

"It's just part of the job," said Gary Larson, Illinois Department of Transportation Operation Supervisor. "The guys like it because they get a little extra overtime that way."

By tracking the system, crews were ready well in advance to handle mother nature. State workers pretreated bridges with a salt brine like at I-72 over 121.

IDOT had 24 trucks equipped with plows and salt ready to treat state highways in Macon County as soon as the snow started to fall. At around 6 p.m., crews finished loading trucks with salt, and they were off. Larson has been working at the Decatur location for 20 years. He said this winter hasn't been that bad compared to others.

"We haven't had any 10 or 12 inch snows or prolonged periods of below zero or blizzard conditions that have lasted three or four days," he said.

Not yet, but there's no telling what the new year has in store.


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