As the region braces for its first possible winter storm, road crews throughout Webster County are prepared to help keep the county's roadways clear and safe for motorists this winter. Webster County Engineer Randy Will said his staff has been prepared for several weeks as they never know when the first snow may fall.
"We've been in preparation for weeks knowing winter could happen at any time," said Will.
The county has plenty of sand and salt in its storage facilities ready to load into trucks spread onto roads to prevent or help relieve icy conditions.
"We've got a full supply," said Will.
Will said road maintenance staff have set routes they are assigned to ensure the roads are cleared as efficiently and effectively as possible.
"We're fully prepared," he said. "Everyone has a route assignment and knows their area."
Webster County road crews can be on the roads as early as 4 a.m. on days following a snowstorm, and will often work until 6 p.m..
Will expects crews to be out today as needed during the afternoon hours.
"The upcoming forecast looks like most of it will be coming in after 5 or 6 p.m.," said Will. "Our crews will be out in the afternoon before 6 if they're needed, but I think the majority of their work with start at 4 a.m. on Thursday."
It's an all hands on deck effort to clear the snow after a storm, with all maintenance employees putting in up to 14 hours in a day if needed.
"They work continuously if need be," said Will. "The crews could potentially put in a 12 to 14 hour day, but they all have their territories and sometimes they can meet up if you have that much snow to work with."
Not having a winter storm until the third week of December can be a good thing for the county, too.
"Sometimes you do get snow in November," he said. "This is pretty late, we've missed well over a month where we could have been moving snow but we're happy not to have it. It helps a little when you can save on the costs of snow removal, time and materials."