Indianapolis crews ready for weekend snowfall; what you should expect

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (Nov. 14, 2014)-- With snow predicted in our area this weekend, the Department of Public Works plans to activate its crews.

Indy Snow Force drivers could begin driving routes in Marion County as early as 3 p.m. Saturday. Indy Snow Force Administrator, Anthony McDaniel, said they reviewed their plan this morning. They will begin with about 24 drivers, who would pretreat roads, bridges and overpasses if necessary.

McDaniel said they would make adjustments to their plan as the forecast changes. Their initial plan also includes adding a total of 90 drivers at 11 p.m. Saturday. At that point, those drivers would work 12 hour shifts through Monday morning.

“We just never really know what the weather is going to do so just as an assurance policy for us, we just want to make sure we have the ability to cover all of our roads and all of our areas so the commute for Monday morning definitely should be problem free,” McDaniel said.

McDaniel said Hoosiers can help them by using off-road parking, if it is available to them, in order for their drivers to be able to clear roads faster.

“What I would say to (people) is (to) just be patient with us. We’re going to be out here hard, working tirelessly to make sure that the roads are travelable and passable so everybody is able to commute back and forth wherever their destination,” McDaniel said.

Public Works Director Lori Miser said their department learned valuable lessons after last year’s season. This year they will operate differently. They will activate contractors sooner to work on residential streets.

Miser said the 6 inch rule will continue to apply, but if we are expected to get more than that, they will not wait until it has stopped snowing to activate their contractors.

“We’re going to get them started maybe at 6 inches (or) maybe even at 4 inches, knowing that the snow is going to continue to come so hopefully that’ll get our residents out on the streets quicker,” Miser said.

DPW will distribute more information to Hoosiers this year too. People can visit indy.gov/snow. On their webpage, you will find travel advisories as well as the status of Indy Snow Force.

“I think we learned from the challenges that we were faced with last winter, but each winter there’s no crystal ball so each winter we just have to look at it and we adjust,” McDaniel said.

The department created a new Indy Snow Force viewer where people can track the plows as they work, when it’s snowing.

“As a driver is out there and they complete a route, they call it in. It shows up on the screen. So people will know where the trucks are, which routes are done…what the status is” Miser said.

If Hoosiers want alerts or updates, they can sign up for Indy Snow Force emails by going to this link. DPW said they have 20,000 tons of salt available for this winter season.

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