Highway Superintendent Neal Haeck told the council members that his employees have been out everyday for nearly a month making sure the county’s roads are passable. There is a list available for volunteers to work the night shift and it’s on a rotating basis.
Haeck said he hired a part-time employee to help and that crew member has been utilized a lot this season.
Haeck added that that he’s up late at night and gets about two hours of sleep and then goes back out to check roads. The crews head out at 4 a.m. ET and start clearing roads of snow and ice. Snow plow drivers hit the main arteries first and attempt to get to all of the roads as much as possible.
They have been using a magnesium chloride and sand mixture to aid in the melting of snow and ice off the roadways in lieu of road salt as the salt supply has been depleted. Haeck said the chloride mixture is as effective as road salt.
In all, $96,000 has been used in overtime. The council approved an additional $60,000 and $4,000 from the stone, gravel and aggregate budget line item and $8,000 from the highway equipment line item to bring the overtime budget to a healthy status.
Haeck will be providing exact numbers of overtime and budget monies to Marshall County Emergency Management Agency Director Clyde Avery in case the county may be able to reach the threshold to submit a request for federal assistance. All department heads, non-profit agencies and schools are encouraged to do the same.