County prepared for winter weather

The Brown County Engineer’s Office is ready for the first big snowfall.
“We’ve inspected all of our equipment, all of our trucks, placed our guys in their (plowing) territories and have done a dry run, so we are ready to go,” said Brown County Engineer Todd Cluxton.
Cluxton said that part of that preparation process is a route inspection during the day when things are dry and calm.
“They identify hazards to them like low hanging utility lines where they could get hung up in wires, or other kinds of obstacles that they are going to encounter on their route,” he said.
Cluxton said the county is ready if we have a winter with heavy snowfall.
“We are at full capacity on salt.  We’ve got about 5000 tons in the dome and another 1500 outside under a tarp.  That should be more than enough.  The most we’ve ever used in a winter was about 4500 tons of salt.”
Cluxton has ten trucks to spread out over ten zones in the county, with two men assigned to each truck for as long as it takes to stay ahead of the weather.
“Inside of those zones, we have a route planned for that person.  It’s the most efficient route based on minimizing the amount of dead ends they have to make and other factors,” Cluxton said.
“It usually takes about four hours, depending on the kind of snow.  If they are having to plow in both directions and put material down, it takes a little bit more time.  We are putting salt on every mile of county road, and it takes us about four hours to do a zone.  There is no way to speed that up based on the number of trucks and employees we have.”
Cluxton explained how residents might think that their particular road has not been plowed recently during a heavy snowfall.
“If a guy is in Fayetteville and he has to go back to Georgetown for more material, then yes, it’s going to seem like he’s been gone for a while.  When you throw in that travel time and the four hours it takes to clear the zone, it could be five or six hours before he’s back to that point.  A lot of snow can fall in six hours.”
Cluxton said that residents can help him and his crews this winter by being understanding of what they are dealing with.
“You have to be patient with us, you have to allow yourself more time to get where you’re going, you have to be patient with other drivers,” Cluxton said.
“At the end of the day, it’s about safety for everyone.”