Sioux Falls City Leaders Say Snow Gates Grade High but Not Perfect for First Major Event
Overall the Sioux Falls Street Department is pleased with the snow removal and snow gate performance over the weekend.
Public Works Director Mark Cotter and Street & Fleet Operations Manager Galynn Huber admit there were problems and complaints. They and the rest of the city crews strive to get better.
The National Weather Service recorded 6.5 inches of snow on Saturday. Huber says city crews discovered areas in southern Sioux Falls with higher accumulation amounts. Over 3,000 miles of city streets were cleaned in a 32-hour span.
Timeline started with crews on alert starting at 4am Saturday while sanding continued until 8pm. Removal began in Zone 3 then finished in the Downtown area until 4am Monday morning.
Huber says in a few instances snow gates had a few operational problems. Fortunately technicians from the manufacturer (John Deere) were available for support during the event. The condition was initially diagnosed as a hydraulic problem, but actually turned out to be a computer software issue. There were no major malfunctions, just general maintenance issues. About the biggest equipment problem was a broken weld on one gate.
Huber also says the amount of relatively dry snow that fell that was about the maximum he would allow for widespread snow gate usage.
The process also revealed that the luck of the draw will determine how much snow is left in your driveway. Near the beginning of the block, less snow will be left behind. If your driveway is at the end of the block more snow left behind will be the result.