Snow Plows Struggle to Keep Roads Clear

Continuous snowfall between Sunday night and Monday morning kept snow plow operators busy clearing the way for commuters. Streets Maintenance Manager, Darrel Ellis says a snow and ice control plan for Washoe County assigns priority to the area's most heavily traveled streets. But when the snow comes in waves, crews have to go back to the beginning before they can move forward.

About 23 plows roamed Reno roads Monday making some headway on the valley floor thanks to sunny skies in the afternoon. As evening temperatures drop drivers once again face icy roads and possibly even more snow. Not to worry though, city officials say tight budgets won’t hinder efforts to keep the roads clear.

Darrel Ellis says the city responds to snow and ice as an emergency. He says keeping the roadways clear is vital not only for drivers, but to help police and fire respond to calls throughout the city. Reno plans for about 13 big storms every year. If there’s a slow storm season, any budget surplus rolls over into the next year’s budget.

For now, Ellis says to keep in mind that snow plow drivers are dealing with the same slippery stuff as the rest of us. He says staying back 300 feet will allow plow drivers a comfort zone, and may save you from slipping in their tracks. Many of the trucks are also spreading sand and salt, so allowing for some space may prevent unnecessary damage to your vehicle.

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