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Long Work Shifts for Snow Plow Crews
FORT MITCHELL, Ky. (Jeff Hirsh) -- The plow trucks are being readied but the trucks and the salt don't need sleep, the plow drivers do.
"Like last Monday we had a 16-hour shift. The snow just kept on and kept on."
Steve Greer is one of four plow drivers in the city of Ft. Mitchell. Small staff, so the hours can add up and it's not even February. This winter could end up seeing a record amount of snowfall which means more hours away from home for guys like Steve.
"It does get tiring, but you just focus and break it down. You don't look at the long term. We've got so much more to go. You look at today, one day at a time."
The crews are amazingly tough, considering the long hours and miserable weather. Maintaining the trucks is critical. For example, you have to wash off all the salt, which can otherwise eat away at the vehicles.
So far, Fort Mitchell has used about 200 tons of salt, with 120 more at the state garage. And another hundred in reserve just in case.
But still, things do wear out. Earlier this week, crews had to replace a plow blade.
It's going to snow later and so out these guys will go again. The trucks, steaming like huge prehistoric beasts, are ready to roll. The drivers, they're ready too.
"It's not our first rodeo. We've done this more than a few times. You just focus and you just do it."
The Fort Mitchell plow drivers are probably at home now, getting some sleep before reporting around eleven Friday night, or earlier if needed. Communities with larger staffs like the City of Cincinnati often put their crews on twelve hour shifts.