RUMFORD — Town highway crews say they barely get cleaned up from one storm before the next one rolls in, challenging work schedules, equipment and supplies.

“The timing of the storms is horrible,” mechanic Jeff Wade of the Mexico Highway Department said. “We barely have a chance to clean up one storm before another one is rolling in. It’s hard to keep up with snow maintenance when the storms don’t stop.”

Wade said the Highway Department had used about half of its sand and salt supply as of Wednesday.

“It’s not too bad, considering the amount of snow we’ve had,” Wade said. “We had a similar situation last year, with all of the ice we had in December, followed by the snow. This year, we had nothing in January, and then got hit by a bunch of snowstorms. We’re about on pace with where we were last year around this time.”

Dixfield Public Works Director Calvin Beaumier said the town has used over half of its snow and salt supplies, and has used more salt this year than last.

Beaumier said one problem his department has encountered is keeping the roads bare between snowstorms.


“With some of these blizzards we’re getting, it’s so cold that we can’t use salt,” Beaumier said. “We end up with snow-packed roads for two or three days. The last couple of days have been warmer, so we’ve been scrambling to get the roads melted before we go into deep freeze again.”

Another problem with the rapid-fire snowstorms is the high snowbanks, Beaumier said, which is causing “a drifting issue.”

“We get these strong gusts of wind that blow the snow from the top of the snowbanks onto the road,” Beaumier said.

“These storms seem to be the gift that keeps on giving,” he said.

Despite the high accumulation of snow, Beaumier said he thinks the town “will be OK.”

“We’re just going to keep doing what we’re doing, and hope we get a break from these snowstorms,” Beaumier said.


Joshua Campbell, an employee with the Woodstock Public Works Department, said that at the same time last year, the town had used a lot more sand.

“It’s a lot better than the ice storms we had last year,” Campbell said. “We’ve had better luck this year. There’s a lot of snow, but it’s not as bad to deal with as last year.”

The biggest struggle for the Bethel Public Works five-man department is “finding the time to get some sleep,” Road Foreman Scott Sumner said.

“Things are getting tight out there, but we’re managing all right,” Sumner said. “The hardest part is juggling sleep among everything else. We’re a five-man crew, but we do what we can. From my point of view, we’ve been doing good. Things weren’t actually that bad this winter until these last couple of storms.”

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