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Lakes Region reports no major problems handling final Nor'easter of 2012
A cluster of snow covered trees in East Wakefield hold up to the first major snow storm of the season. (Larissa Mulkern/Union Leader)
A lone snowplow truck makes its way north on Route 153 in Wakefield on Thursday. (Larissa Mulkern/Union Leader)
MOULTONBOROUGH – The day started early for Public Works Director Scott Kinmond and area snowplow crews as the first major Nor'easter of the season blew across the lakes region.
Reached on his cell phone in a plow truck mid-day, Kinmond said the plow crews were out by 4 a.m. on Thursday, scraping, plowing and treating roads with salt and sand mixture. The 'fleet' includes 10 town-owned plow trucks and 22 private contractors assigned to keep the access and fire roads clear. The town includes 170 miles of private roads, and 77 miles of town roads, he said.
Accumulation was estimated at about six inches, but Kinmond said high wind gusts of up to 25 miles an hour made for tough visibility.
“The wind makes it difficult in a prolonged snow event like this,” he said. “The wind is blowing snow across the roads,” he said. School would have been cancelled on Thursday, but many officials agreed it helped that this was vacation week with many adults also choosing to stay home and take the day off.
“The hype of the storm itself, and the preparation by the people who took the day off or were off for the holiday helps out. Traffic has been minimal,” he said.
Kinmond himself expected to stay on duty for the duration of the storm. He said he gets his stamina from a tad of caffeine, but not too much, and healthy living. “Caffeine helps out, but you don't want to go overboard,” he said.
No major accidents or outages were reported as of mid-day.
In Wolfeboro, Assistant Public Works Director Scott Pike said all 10 of the fleet's plows were out clearing roads. The sidewalk plow was also deployed to keep walkways clear for pedestrians. He said this storm did not require pre-treatment of the roads, as it was a dry snow. This morning two plows broke down but were soon back on the road. He estimated about seven inches of snow accumulation in Wolfeboro.
Traffic was just slightly below average, he said, adding he was surprised people were out and about this morning. “There are still a lot of people out there.”
Wolfeboro Police Department Lt. Dean Rondeau said there were two weather related car accidents: a car collided with a plow truck on Route 28 and a car slid off the road near Weston Auto Body Shop on South Main Street. No injuries were reported.
“Otherwise, it's been a very quiet day today,” said Rondeau. “The roads have been a challenge to maintain, but the state and town crews are out there doing a great job.”
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