Monroe takes Old Man Winter steps in March

March 30, 2013 by  

Despite spring supposedly approaching, Monroe, Connecticut, began the month getting ready for winter weather.

A nor’easter was predicted to start March 6, bringing high winds and snow that were expected to continue into Thursday. It did not actually arrive until March 8, and Monroe’s Highway Department and emergency services people said they were ready for that storm, and any more than come during the winter.

Deputy director of Public Works Chris Nowacki said they had already started inspecting plows and trucks in anticipation of the storm, as well as undertaking special procedures with their vehicles, such as chaining up the two outside rear wheels of dump trucks that are used as snowplows. The chains allow trucks to drive safely on icy roads.

Crews remained on call after their normal shifts were over, just in case the storm worsened and they were needed. Also, Monroe has what are known as “candy cane’ hookups that transform trucks into plows quickly.

In addition, water, food, and other materials were stored in the Highway Garage in case drivers had to stay there. Highway personnel also checked fuel levels and made sure block heaters, which warm up engines quickly so they start easily in cold weather, were in good condition. Emergency services inspected all the buildings in town to make sure their generators were working properly.

So far, the winter has been fairly light, but Monroe has taken this storm as its cue to make sure it is ready for anything. Town officials could work with brochure printers to create a mailer for residents giving them safety tips for cold weather.