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High Snow Banks Block Sight Lines at Avon Intersections

Department of Public Works plow drivers are working to push back snow banks and finish plowing. Officials urge drivers to be cautious and go slower.

Roads were slick in Avon Monday morning and "the plowing continues" after Department of Public Works employees had a break overnight to get some sleep, according to Assistant Town Manager Steve Bartha.

“We continue to work on the secondary roads to improve the overall width of the road and we’re also working to address sight line issues at the intersections," Avon Highway Foreman Paul Welsh said Monday evening.

He cautioned drivers to "drive slowly, especially with the high snowbanks" and to nudge out into intersections.

"That’s a big concern,” Welsh said.

Officials have not reported any major weather-related accidents, though one car got stuck in a snow bank Monday evening near a bend on Thompson Road.

The plow drivers are pushing the snow banks back further to help with visibility. Welsh said that some are as high as 8 to 10 feet.

"A lot of the banks are so high you can’t see the cars coming from the other direction," Bartha said.

Some of the plow drivers had been at work for as much as 72 hours straight when they went home at 8 p.m. Sunday night. After working Friday morning through Saturday night, half of the crews went home between 9 and 10 p.m. and the others continued plowing into Sunday evening.

"It's part of our responsibility," Welsh said. "We can't walk away from it."

Snow layering the roads early Monday froze, making conditions slippery. Public Works employees were in at 6 a.m. to salt the roads. Select roads have slush on them still, but none have any ice as of 4:48 p.m., Welsh said.

Public Works employees spent Friday into Saturday making roads passable for emergency vehicles and Saturday and Sunday widening travel lanes so there was enough room for two vehicles to pass by each other, according to Bartha.

“Every road in town is now passable by two vehicles," Bartha said.

Town Hall reopened Monday and Bartha said he spent hours fielding calls from residents about snow plowing progress. The town has not released an estimate on when plowing and snow bank work will be completed.

“People are frustrated, but we all have houses too and we’ve been digging ourselves out too for days," Bartha said. “I think this is the most snow we have had in 20 years.”

Town officials are requesting that residents keep their fire hydrants clear, as it is the responsibility of the homeowners. Bartha said that it would be helpful to clear fire hydrants in neighbors' properties if they can't get to it.

"They would being a service to the town and the neighborhood to dig it out," Bartha said. "The same with mailboxes."

There weren't any significant power disruptions due to the blizzard.

Welsh expects plows to be out all week working on the roads and snow banks unless the snow melts or there is more snow. There is not target estimate for completion at this time.

“We’ll be very aggressive this week when it comes to each plow truck staying out on their routes," Welsh said. "People just need to be patient."

He said that he recognizes that some mailboxes have been buried in snow and some driveways have had pushed into them, but that it unfortunately can't be helped.

"We need to continue to push back some of these roadways," he said.

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