Snow, standing water continue to plague Anchorage crews trying to clear them

Published: Feb. 18, 2022 at 8:24 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) - Anchorage has seen a lot of snow recently, but that’s not the only obstacle facing drivers. Standing water also remains a problem for Municipality of Anchorage crews trying to keep the roads clear.

“The other night they popped 25 drains,” said Street Maintenance Manager Paul VanLandingham. “They’ve been going ... around the clock the last two or three days here.”

The water is just the latest challenge as crews clear snow from city streets.

“We got six or seven of those little, small, small two-inchers (of snow). And then of course they start to add up,” VanLandingham said. “So we start plowing and then we get hit with this last little bit that we got here in these last four or five days.”

All that snow, according to VanLandingham, has made the job difficult. The rain doesn’t help, he said, but the back-to-back storms are what makes it hard for the crews to keep up.

“Last Wednesday night we got 4 or 5 inches there. We started plowing our arterials, started to get into residentials,” VanLandingham said. “And then we get a couple of snowfalls there, and then it just pulls us out of the residential areas and onto the main arterials.”

The crews work around the clock, seven days a week. Despite the long hours and challenges, VanLandingham credits his crews for their resilience.

“They’re stepping up. ... It gets tired but they’re sticking it out,” he said.

Snow plows will remain on the roads until they are cleared.

VanLandingham estimated it could take up to two to three weeks to complete the work, including the removal of snow berms. But that could change with more snow or rain.

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