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City aims to have all streets in Dickinson cleared of snow sometime Wednesday

A machine commonly referred to as a snoweater picks up windrows of snow while blowing it into a dump truck along Second Street East in downtown Dickinson near Roosevelt Elementary on Tuesday morning.

After at least 16 inches of snow fell over the weekend, Dickinson city officials are still working to remove the winter precipitation from municipal roadways.

Gary Zuroff, Dickinson's director of public works, said Tuesday morning the city hopes to have all streets plowed by sometime today.

"We're trying to get all the roads -- including the side streets -- done by (Wednesday)," Zuroff said. "We've had somebody on 24/7 since the storm hit. We've got some contracted roads done south of town and we're continuing to move north. We're also trying to haul all the snow out, but, when it gets wet like it is now, it becomes heavy and more difficult to move."

Zuroff said the city will also continue to work to remove what he called the "windrows," which are piles of snow in the middle of downtown roads and other main arteries like Villard Street.

"We would have had more of that picked up (Monday), but the snow was so heavy that we couldn't blow it into our trucks," Zuroff said. "It might be a while until we get some of those windrows picked up. With this amount of snow, and with it being so wet, it's been difficult."

Zuroff encouraged residents to move their vehicles off the street, if possible, to aid plows as they move throughout the city. As of late Tuesday afternoon, many cars were seen unmoved on city streets with piles of snow on top of them. Some driveways were also blocked by large snow mounds from the city's plowing efforts.

"Usually with light snow, we can drop our equipment so we don't leave a big pile in front of people's driveways," Zuroff said. "With this heavy snow, though, we can't do that. If we do plow in front of your driveway, we'd appreciate help in getting some of that snow out of the way. We can't alleviate that problem."

A number of local businesses also chipped in to help with the post-storm cleanup. Lyons Concrete Construction owner Jeremy Lyons said he and some of his employees cleared about a dozen driveway entrances in Dickinson neighborhoods following the storm.

After returning home on Tuesday afternoon, Dickinson resident Michael Suggs grabbed a shovel and started digging out the snow barrier in front of his apartment building's parking lot on 13th Avenue West.

"It's great that they come and plow the streets, but then you have a huge pile of snow and you can't get out," Suggs said between scoops. "My Camaro only sits a little ways off the ground -- there's no way I'd get it out of here."

Yolanda Garcia, who lives in the same building, said she hadn't been able to get her vehicle out since Saturday night.

"I'm sure there are a lot of people around town who still can't get around," Garcia said. "You don't expect a storm like we had in April."

Bryan Horwath
A Wisconsin native, Horwath has been covering news in the Oil Patch of North Dakota since 2012. Horwath currently serves as the senior agriculture and political reporter for The Dickinson Press and, despite the team's tendency to always let him down, remains a diehard Minnesota Vikings fan.
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