Lincoln officials ‘go big’ with new fleet of versatile snowplows

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – Winter is coming, and Lincoln officials are ready to tackle snowy and icy roads across the city.

Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and Lincoln Transportation and Utilities Director Liz Elliot sang the praises of the city’s new “snowfighting” equipment in a Thursday press release.

“When it comes to preparation for winter weather events, we go big so you can go home,” Gaylor Baird said. “Our 12 new, super-combo trucks replace the oldest ones in our fleet, nearly doubling our capacity to clear arterial streets of ice and snow.”

Those snowplow trucks, which cost the city $301,583.50 each, are able to spray anti-icing material, spread a salt and brine mix, and plow snow, officials say.

The city budgeted for those trucks in the 2020-21 budget, according to a press release.

“Because the new super-combo trucks can complete multiple tasks on their routes, drivers can avoid time-consuming trips to maintenance shops to change vehicles,” Elliott said. “That means crews have more time to keep people safe and streets clear of snow and ice.”

Since the city is custom-making deicing brine, Elliott said the city is saving $100,000 to $300,000 annually.

Lincoln’s transportation department has also invested in a new station, where snowplows can be filled with different brine combinations to match the severity of each storm.

When winter does come, Elliot reminded Lincolnites to use the Snowplow Tracker before making service requests.

Elliot reminded residents of the following when it comes to snow removal requests:

  • Watch – Watch for the storm to end. Crews are better able to respond to service requests after a storm has passed and arterial and emergency streets have been serviced.
  • Review – Review the Snowplow Tracker at lincoln.ne.gov/snow to monitor snowplowing progress. Please pause requests unless your service area is shaded in dark green, which means it has been serviced, inspected and approved. If your service area is not shaded in dark green, crews are still plowing and may solve your problem soon.
  • Request – Make a service request. Please submit requests to UPLNK.lincoln.ne.gov if your service area is shaded in dark green but requires additional attention.

“This year, we are reorganizing how we clear arterial and emergency routes to get you where you need to go faster,” Elliott said. “We’re adding additional snowfighters and new snowplows to increase efficiency. This effort will help us finish plowing arterial streets sooner, and we anticipate we will be able to complete these routes by up to two hours earlier than we have in the past.”

Lincoln Transportation and Utilities will be hosting a hiring event from 5 to 8 p.m. on Nov. 9 at the Municipal Services Center.

“These seasonal workers are important to LTU, especially during major winter storms, when snowfighters battle the elements around the clock,” Elliott said.

Categories: Lancaster, News, Weather