Jeff Branscome writes about Spotsylvania County.
Ride along with Vince, a VDOT snow plowman
I got a first-hand experience at the amount of planning, work, and effort it takes to snow plow the roads here after what is looking to be a record snow fall for at least the decade.
David Stanley, VDOT residency administrator, picked me up at the Free Lance-Star offices and took me to the Falmouth VDOT storage area, where I met up with Vince Tyler, a plowman. Vince and I took a 16-mile roundtrip on U.S. 17 to the Faquier County line and back to the Falmouth station. A few things we both noticed: there are too many people driving on the roads, which makes it harder for the crews to do their jobs. I was even a bit shocked at the number of low-lying sport cars on the road.
Stanley said I-95 had way more traffic than anyone anticipated, apparently three lanes of it moving slowly. Some people living in subdivisions are calling VDOT offices complaining about no snow removal, and I think I gained the perspective of why it is truly impossible for VDOT and the hoards of trucks to get to back roads and subdivision roads right now. The snow won’t stop. We’re past a foot already and it’s coming down harder today than last night. Do not expect any VDOT or state plow truck to get to your back roads or subdivision roads for about two days. It’s really that bad.
Here is Vince getting ready to roll.
Clearing U.S. 17 toward Fauquier County.
Vince several times had to stop his truck to clear his windshield that became caked with ice. The wipers did not work too well. Vince woke up at 5 a.m., and drove 22 mph in his pick-up truck to work from Partlow to Falmouth. He’s working at least 12 hours. He said he expects snow removal will continue into early next week, and early reports are that more snow is to come next week. He could be busier than he had thought.