Archive for Friday, January 1, 1999

CITY GIRDS FOR SNOW

January 1, 1999

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If Lawrence wakes up this morning suffocating under a blanket of snow, Tom Orzulak wants everyone to relax.

The city's street crews have it covered.

"I'm looking at 6 to 10 inches of snow. That's what the conglomerate of crystal balls says," Orzulak, the city's street division manager, said Thursday. "We're just going to work around the clock till we get it done."

Beginning at 6 a.m. today, Orzulak plans to have 13 trucks, three graders and possibly even two rented graders ready with plows and spreaders to attack the city's 275-mile web of streets.

Crews figure to dump up to 1,200 tons of salt and sand on the streets as a base, intended to provide traction until all streets can be cleared of whatever snow arrives, Orzulak said.

If necessary, plows will clear the city's main roads first, to keep areas of heavy traffic moving as smoothly as possible, Orzulak said. Secondary streets, such as 19th Street and Monterey Way, will get attention next, followed by the city's growing labyrinth of residential streets and courts.

Bottom line: All streets in Lawrence will be treated at least once during or after the storm, Orzulak said.

"My long-range plan is to have good streets by Monday morning," Orzulak said. "We want to make sure everything's good to go Monday morning. That's when everybody goes back to work and school."

Mayor Marty Kennedy knows city crews will be up to the task and gives them high marks for working 12-hour shifts in difficult conditions -- and being prepared to work on a holiday, to boot.

"I think they've done an excellent job so far this year," Kennedy said. "They always do a good job for the city."

-- Mark Fagan's phone message number is 832-7188. His e-mail address is mfagan@ljworld.com.

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