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MCC Daily Tribune

How was your long weekend?

Long doesn't begin to describe the grounds and maintenance staff's. This weekend marked the return of Residence Hall students, athletic events in the PAC, and a little snowstorm with bitterly cold temperatures. (Sound familiar?)

That 16.5" of official snow was met head on by our 6 member grounds crew and several maintenance mechanics armed with every piece of equipment we had. You might not have seen them because they worked 8-14 hour shifts through the night. Most of the nights they started at 10 pm or 3 am depending on when the snow was falling. The entire campus was plowed 4 times total. Why so many? Because if the snow gets too deep we don't have enough horse power and traction to push it across the parking lots. Snowflakes are light, but snow banks are heavy. While it was too cold for salt to work, we used specially treated salt to lower its effective temperature. It has taken all weekend to loosen up the packed snow on the roadway, but it is finally coming loose. The lots are also covered in packed snow so the lines are harder to see. The salt and sun are working together to break through the hard packed snow and they will be showing shortly. (Monday afternoon)

Now for the trivia fans:

232 person hours of labor clocked

40,000 pounds of treated salt

2,500 pounds of sidewalk ice melt

216 gallons of gasoline

300 gallons of diesel fuel

A question I have been asked is why are we leaving a dusting of snow on many surfaces? What we are finding is the hard packed snow is slipperier than some snow dust. If we can't break through the hard pack, it is better to leave something on it for traction. On Tuesday we had an early flurry, so we left some on to improve traction. This freed up the crew to concentrate on shoveling doorways and emergency exits. We have to have them clear when school is open. Our small crew has done their best. Kudos to them.

Now you know, the rest of the story.

Blaine Grindle