PRINEVILLE, OR-- Central Oregon cities and counties continue to take advantage of a break in the weather to clear roads. Prineville’s Street Superintendent Scott Smith briefed City Councilors, Thursday, on the immense effort to clear the city’s 57 miles of road.
He told Councilors, "We’ve been using every single piece of equipment that Public Works has. We even actually borrowed a backhoe from an employee’s family and we’re using that, right now, too. But, we’re running two road graders, one dump truck snowplow; we’ve got two sanders, we’ve got three backhoes, a loader."
He says he has an $11,500 annual overtime budget and has already easily burned through that, along with more than a thousand yards of sanding cinders. "Folks, last week, I panicked because I thought we were going to run out and wouldn’t have enough to get through the weekend," Smith told Councilors, Thursday. "So, we purchased another $5,000 worth. The problem is, there aren’t any trucks that are available to haul it, so we’re struggling to get those in. We got a load today, and hopefully with that, we’re going to be all right."
Prineville city crews begin at midnight or 1 a.m. and Smith says, if everything goes well, they can clear all streets in three days; until the next storm.