City testing snow boot to avoid blocking driveways

City testing snow boot to avoid blocking driveways

The City of Spokane is testing a snow boot to help keep driveways from getting blocked by plows.

The boot is attached to city graders meant to act as a gate that keeps driveways from getting bermed in.

The good news?

“Up until about 4 inches, it works pretty good,” said Mark Serbousek from the City of Spokane.

But with heavier snowfalls, the boot struggles to keep up.

“What we do know is they break quite easily…ours has been in the shop already several times this season,” Serbousek said.

Not to mention the boot system takes nearly twice as long as normal, making it less efficient and more expensive.

“We are on twelve hour days, seven days a week. So, we’re 24/7 right now, and we have quite a few of our people that we’ve brought in, all on overtime.” Serbousek said.

Snow boots are not new to Spokane.

“Back in the early 1990’s we had a number of boots on our graders, and we moved away from them because they spent more time in the shop or just broken than we did using them,” Serbousek said.

Crews are actually testing the boot now, to evaluate the possibility of implementing them throughout the city.

While they do, neighbors are asked to do their part to keep those roads clear.

“We can’t get the streets opened up, now we have berms on both sides of the streets on these narrow streets, so we’re just trying to work with the citizens, and have them work with us and try to make it easier for everybody,” Serbousek said.

Moving your car out of the plow’s way isn’t a perfect solution, but it does help.

“Even cars that are on the even side of the street are going to get some snow against their cars hat we usually try to do is pull at least half of it to the side without cars,” Serbousek said.

And, patience is key.

“The big thing is be patient with us for coming through, we’re trying to make streets safer for our citizens,” Serbousek said.