PEORIA, Ill. — As unpredictable weather is moving into the area this weekend, Peoria Public Works Superintendent of Operations Sie Maroon says his crew is preparing for whatever it has to do.
“We’re preparing for the worst and hoping for the best,” Maroon said.
With potential high levels of rain, ice, and snow, Maroon says his 55 snow plowers have been told to be ready for anything.
Each worker will work a 12-hour shift, and there will be two shifts throughout the day.
“We’re putting our best foot forward and getting everything ready to go,” Maroon said.
But with the rain coming before the snow, it adds some difficulty in how they can prepare.
“We might be fighting two storms in one. We might be fighting a snowstorm, we might be fighting a wind storm with ice. It’s hard to say, but based on all these predictions and forecasts, it’s a little bit of everything out there,” Maroon said.
Maroon says with all the different things that could happen Saturday, it’s difficult for him and his team to create a specific plan.
Maroon says it’s smarter to just stay off the roads tomorrow if you don’t have to get out and drive.
“We’re looking at the rain, well of course then you have flooding, or flash flooding if we get that type of rainfall. Then we go into the icing, which is another situation. Now with icing, we’re talking about tree limbs and power lines potentially,” Maroon added.
Maroon recommends giving crews room to work. He says his crew is watching the forecast and will adapt as the storm rolls in.
He says his crews will be responding to roads that have ice on them, which then are covered with snow.
Maroon adds usually his crews would be putting out a “pre-treat” brine on the roads, but because of the rain and potential ice that is coming Saturday, they will not be putting brine down on the roads.
He says the rain would just wash the brine off.
Maroon is hoping the rain will eat up some of the snow before it begins to accumulate on the pavement, but because there’s supposed to be ice between the rain and snow, Maroon is not sure if that is going to happen.
Maroon also hopes the warm ground temperatures from Thursday and Friday will help keep the roads from accumulating too much ice and snow on Saturday.
He adds high winds will be trouble on Saturday as well.