Roanoke City leaders prepare for weekend winter storm

Published: Jan. 13, 2022 at 10:22 PM EST
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ROANOKE, Va. (WDBJ) - “We have been working with the City’s Fleet Division to make sure all of our equipment is ready. We’re prepping in terms of salt brine for our anti-icing and pre-treatments,” said Dwayne D’Ardenne, the Transportation Division Manager for the city of Roanoke.

As the Roanoke community prepares for what Mother Nature will bring this weekend, city leaders like to stay on top of severe weather plans at all times.

“Every year we do an all-hands snow training,” said D’Ardenne.

“We’re constantly evaluating those plans, re-evaluating those plans and making sure that they will be effective when the time comes,” said Battalion Chief Trevor Shannon, who runs Emergency Management and Community Preparedness for the City.

As southwest Virginia waits to see what happens, the city is asking residents for patience when the storm does hit, mainly due to staffing shortages.

“We are about 25 percent down between COVID and vacancies. So you think about that, it’s going to be about 25 folks who are not going to be on the streets plowing that normally would be,” said D’Ardenne.

But those challenges won’t stop crews from doing their best to serve the community.

“We’re gonna do what we need to do to help you out, but just know that patience is a big thing,” said Shannon.

The city now turns to making sure the Roanoke community has everything needed to be prepared, whether that be at home or in your car.

“We consistently push the 72-hour preparedness message and we will continue to push that because we know that it’s valuable, we know that it works. People think the 72-hour preparedness message is just for their home; we’re talking cars too. Do you have enough water, do you have enough snacks, do you have a blanket?”

D’Ardenne also said having a snow shovel in your car can always come in handy. The city is asking for residents to minimize on-street parking and shovel the snow at your house to the right of your driveway. D’Ardenne said these steps will help crews tremendously when it comes to snow removal.

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