GREEN BAY, Wis. (WBAY) – Summer is officially over and fall has arrived.
There isn’t snow in the forecast for northeast Wisconsin, but that isn’t stopping the Green Bay Public Works Department from thinking about it.
They’ve already started training for the upcoming snowfall.
This year, they’re trying something they’ve never done before and snow plows are already on the streets of Green Bay.
“Today’s the first day of fall, but we’re already looking forward. It’s only three months before winter’s here,” said Steve Grenier, director of Green Bay Public Works.
The department has added some new drivers recently and it wants to make sure they’re ready to clean the streets this winter.
Without snow, practicing becomes difficult.
“The plows and wings generally on bare pavement like this are going to throw a lot of sparks,” said Tony Fietzer, superintendent of Green Bay Public Works. “Our drivers aren’t afforded the opportunity to actually train and prep for winter until winter actually gets here.”
This year, department leaders came up with a way to solve that problem.
“We’ve taken one of our old plows and equipped it with some caster,” said Grenier. “We can actually drop the plow blade down and it’s riding just a few inches up over the pavement surface.”
Grenier said the department realizes there aren’t always perfect conditions when plowing, so it’s created obstacles for drivers for drivers to practice maneuvering around.
“We’ve got an arrangement worked out with a local towing contractor where they’ve been able to provide us with some salvage vehicles,” Grenier said.
“We have some garbage cans, some mailboxes, some different things that drivers may encounter other than actual snow,” Fietzer said.
Department leaders said since both new and old drivers are practicing now, come winter, Green Bay residents may see the effects of the training.[Notes:2:38]
“Make our plow drivers more efficient and quicker,” Grenier said. “The more training, the better these guys are going to be.”