The Milford Highway Surveyor said he's confident the department is ready for the Blizzard of 2013, which could dump some 2 feet of snow on Milford overnight.
The snow started falling Friday morning, but has not yet started accumulating. At its peak, however, it will fall at a rate of 2 to 3 inches an hour. Blizzard conditions are expected by tonight, that's winds exceeding 35 mph for at least three hours.
Scott Crisafulli, Milford's Highway Surveyor, said the department has 20 full time workers out today, and will have 45 contractors too, all plowing routes. They will stay on until the snow is cleared. "They stay on until it's done," Crisafulli said.
Unlike the National Grid crews, who will not work on lines until the winds subside, the snow plows will operate through the blizzard. The priorities will be the main roads, keeping them clear, then the secondary roads. Sidewalks will be cleared a few times, due to the depth of snow expected.
To put the 2- to 3-inch an hour accumulation in perspective: each route takes a driver two hours to plow, Crisafulli said. So, if snow is falling at a rate of 2 inches an hour, the accumulation on the road could be eight inches by the time a driver circles back.
For the first time, the town's new snow plow — called a wing plow — will be used in the storm. It's distinctive looking: it has a broad blue-colored plow. The plow can clear snow as fast as four pickup trucks, he said. Town Meeting representatives approved the $190,000 plow this past October. That new plow will take care of Ivy Lane and Rolling Green in this storm.
Crisafulli said because temperatures are expected to drop to the teens tonight, the snow will be lightweight, and easier to plow than heavy, wet snow.
"It will be much easier to move the snow," he said.