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Public works ready for first snowfall

CHAMPAIGN -- Crews have been getting ready for snow and ice for months.
CHAMPAIGN -- Crews have been getting ready for snow and ice for months. WCIA-3's Anthony Antoine finds out how public works prepares for the worst.

"I like the snow. I think it's really festive and it gets you in the holiday spirit."

While Vanessa Askew was looking forward to the snow, public works was thinking of ways to get rid of it.

"In early November, we pull everyone together. We run through all the snow routes."

One thing which helps crews get it cleared is maps. They're divided and color-coded. Crews get familiar with the route early on.

"It's always good for us to be prepared; over-prepared if we need to."

Prepared for less than an inch of snow. It may not be a lot this time, but crews from public works say it's a warm up of what may be ahead.

"We send them out before there's any snow on the ground. Check for hazards. We make sure everyone knows how to use the equipment. We did already have some chemicals on the ground from Friday night, so having it on the ground, did give us a head-start. We have crews out, clearing out what snow is there as well as continuing to lay down some chemicals."

It takes thirty drivers to plow the roads. They start with the main city streets, then focus on large parking lots and streets in residential areas; working around-the-clock for people like Askew.

"They look pretty clean to me. I never see a problem with it, but the sidewalks can use some work."

"We do ask that residents not put snow in the road when they're clearing their own driveways. Keep it on your property. That way we're not coming back to clear something we already did."

Putting snow into the street is a violation of city code. It's more than 700 miles of road to keep clear, but the city is up for the job.
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