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reflections on 2014 snow removal

This has been a horrible winter for every public works department in the state. Lots of snow.  Lots of potholes caused by the weather. Our public works department (highway, sanitation, water department), parks department, police try very hard to be responsive. Many people have sent me e mails or called me praising their hard work and responsiveness during this difficult winter season.  A number of people have also been volunteering as snow angels this season helping the disabled/elderly with snow removal.  The volunteer efforts of our snow angels is greatly appreciated.

These are some thoughts about how we’re handling the frequent storms.  Some of the snow related problems we have been experiencing require cooperation from residents and other government entities.  Town officials and I are more than happy to meet with neighborhood groups to solicit your thoughts on how we can improve our snow operations in the future.   Your town government even makes housecalls! Feel free to e mail me at pfeiner@greenburghny.com or to call me on my cell: 438-1343 or at 993-1545.

 

 

1.            Areas where parking is a problem. I.e. Fieldstone, Rockledge ,etc. The Police and DPW Departments have been working

very hard to keep these areas safe however I think we need to look at the underlying issue residents have nowhere to

put their cars. We have spoken to a number of our veteran plow drivers and it really appears that the number of cars in these

developments has doubled. This has made our efforts to clear snow very troublesome. Are there restrictions on the number

cars permitted with these units?

 

2.            Sidewalks covered by the NYSDOT and others that have been covered by tremendous amounts of snow. It has become

evident that the NYSDOT is not clearing these walks, the Bee Line bus company, Metro North, are very slow to act if not

at all. Lastly our homeowners are not equipped to remove snow of this magnitude. As we have witnessed this can create

serious public safety issues due to lack of actions by others. In short the above don’t have the manpower or equipment to

handle these events and in every case they look to the Town for answers. 

 

3.            Residents plowing their driveways into our streets, clearing their cars off in the street and frankly throwing snow into the street

because they have no more room on their property for it. This will forever be a problem and the police and dpw will continually

have to monitor this continual condition.

 

4.            Broken mailboxes…. This is not usually caused by a plow hitting the post but by the volume and weight of the snow snapping the post.

We are always on top of this as soon as we are aware of the issue. We stock and replace the post and mailboxes within a few days.

 

5.            Sanitation Dept. garbage and recycling cancellation. This is almost un-avoidable at this point after a storm due to the fact that more

and more sanitation employees are involved in the snow removal operations. We have tried to alter operations to prevent this

but this year due to the severity of the storms it has be very difficult.

 

6.            Fire Hydrants. The fire departments help clean up the snow from hydrants.  However, there are thousands of hydrants around town. It would be helpful if people would “adopt a hydrant”.

 

7.            Pot holes. After storms these are a big problem we are now addressing these with a hot mix because we purchased a hot box.

This piece of equipment keeps the asphalt hot so the asphalt doesn’t set up before we are able to fill. However due to the conditions

of some of our roads we still need to use some of the cold patch as we just can’t keep up.  The cold patches don’t last very long. This is an ongoing issue.

 

8.            Cars blocking the road and preventing or restricting plow access. The police dept. and dpw try to address this as quickly as possible.

However this usually accounts for half of the my street hasn’t been plowed yet calls. We always address a.s.a.p.

 

9.            Trucks this has been a very hard year on the fleet. But thanks to the hard work at the repair shop its hasn’t been too much of an issue.

This is the second year in a row that we had had a truck catch on fire (without any injuries). Please remember we still have trucks on the

Road that date back to 1976 this needs to be kept in mind when we lose a truck in a storm and have to cover with a smaller truck that

might not perform the task as well.

PAUL FEINER

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