Delaware still tallying cost of snow removal

    When you consider Delaware got practically a typical winter’s worth of snow from this single December storm, it’s likely to cost more than the $3 million dollars the state Department of Transportation has in the snow removal fund.

    When you consider Delaware got practically a typical winter’s worth of snow from this single December storm, it’s likely to cost more than the $3 million dollars the State Department of Transportation has in the snow removal fund.

    But DelDOT spokesman Jim Westhoff says, “We are not out of money for snow removal.”

    With snow totals as high as 17″ in New Castle County, DelDOT crews are still working throughout the state applying salt and clearing roads.

    “While we set aside some money every year for snow removal, that is not the total amount available to us,” Jim Westhoff, DelDOT Community Relations Officer, said. “We will spend whatever it costs to keep the roads safe.  At the end of the storm, we might have to sit down and decide where to pull the money from, but our first priority is to make sure the roads are safe.  The Governor has made it very clear that we are not going to cut corners when it comes to keeping the roads safe.”

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    “We had about 500 employees working on the storm and that includes drivers and mechanics, dispatchers and supervisors,” Westhoff said.  “One fellow left home at 1 a.m. Saturday morning and was home for the first time Monday night.”

    Westhoff says DelDOT does not yet know how much this storm will cost between overtime, equipment and supply costs.  There’s also the matter that neighborhood associations have not sent in their bills yet for the Snow Reimbursement Program.

    “It will be many weeks before we have a final total for this storm,” Westhoff said.

    Tuesday was still proving to be a challenging day for drivers in Delaware.

    One day after AAA had a record 16,000 calls for assistance, calls on Tuesday are still 55% higher than usual with most drivers needing towing or battery service.

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