Rochester Department of Public Works preparing the city for wintry weather

ROCHESTER, N.Y. The City of Rochester has more than 800 miles of streets to clear. They are prepared to do that Wednesday night.

News10NBC talked to the city’s director of operations and learned how the public can help the plow drivers. Snowplow drivers will work through the night to make sure your Thursday morning commute is a smooth one.

“So each truck holds about six tons,” said Director of Operations Karen St. Aubin. “Depends on the size of the trucks. Between six and nine tons.”

Most of Wednesday morning at the city’s salt barn on Mount Read Boulevard was spent filling up trucks with road salt. St. Aubin tells us for now just a few dozen trucks will be out on the road.

“If we are plowing the main roads, we have about 50,” said St. Aubin. “If we are plowing the residential, or sidewalks you know that number gets up and goes over 150.”

Road salt is effective for snow and ice removal but only works if the temperatures don’t drop. If it does, St. Aubin says there’s plenty of treated salt also at the barn.

“That treated salt works when the temperatures get into the teens,” said St. Aubin. “It holds on to the road a little bit better and certainly is more effective, and you need the traffic for the traction.”

If you live in Rochester, the city is asking for your help to make plowing snow easy. First thing is parking.

“Please stay with our parking regulations,” said St. Aubin. “Make sure you’re on the right side of the road so that we can get down and give the best plow for your street. Just one car out of place can certainly make that whole block not plowed as well as it should be.”

And remember slow plows need plenty of room to operate, especially on narrow streets.

“If people can slow down,” said St. Aubin. “Remember we haven’t had a lot of driving issues this winter. We haven’t had a lot of snow. So, use your driving skills.”

The last challenge is the weather itself.

“It’s timing really,” said St. Aubin. “You know this is going to go into rush hour, which is going to make conditions a little bit rough. Certainly, that’s the challenge is all the cars on the road.”

News10NBC tried to get a comment from the New York State Department of Transportation on their storm preparations for our interstate highways. So far, they haven’t answered our calls.