County hopes to have roads cleared tonight
County Engineer Bill Belzer hopes to have at least one lane cleared on all gravel roads by Friday night.
“We have nine motor graders out on the gravel now,” Belzer said during the monthly department head meeting with the board of supervisors on Thursday morning. He commented that opening up at least one lane on the gravel roads will not only allow people to get out who have been stranded at home, but also allow some people to actually reach their homes for the first time since before the storm.
“It was an ugly snow,” said Belzer, estimating that the county got about 14 inches of snow. The road crews actually brought the trucks home with them on Tuesday night, which Belzer said helped the crews get out of their own homes and get to work plowing the paved roads.
Clearing the snow has become somewhat of a community effort, as many farmers have been helping to clear roads.
“A majority of dead-end roads less than a mile get cleared before we get to them,” said Belzer.
Belzer reported that he knew of six stranded vehicles on county roads and at that time crews had already plowed out five of them. He has also heard reports of vehicles getting stuck in driveways.
Also during the department head meeting, a problem with the phone system was brought to the supervisors’ attention.
The issue was first mentioned by Rick Van Winkle, Veterans Affairs Director, who reported that people trying to call his office get a dial tone instead of hearing the phone ring. The caller will hang up, not knowing that the phone is actually ringing.
Sarah Kaufman, CPC, reported that this problem has also been occurring in her office for a while.
“It’s got to get fixed,” said Kaufman. “People aren’t going to stay on the line while they get a busy signal. They’re going to call, hang up, call, hang up.”
The other department heads reported that they’ve had similar problems with the phone system and since the system was installed there has always been some little glitch occurring.
Supervisor Chairman Marc Lindeen replied that the board would look into the phone problem and see what can be done to fix it.