Why Snow Plow Operators Are Unsung Heroes In New York
Buffalo, New York is often referred to as the “Snow Capital Of The World,” and it’s true: we are known for our snowfall.
Just last year, Buffalo made national news several times when it came to the weather, and the Christmas Blizzard caught the rest of the country’s attention as it was only really experienced here. On Dec. 26, 2022, it was reported by New York Upstate that “meteorologists and weather observers recorded more than 49 inches of snow in 72 hours at the Buffalo airport.” We had more snowfall in three days than anywhere else in New York state.
Of course, you can’t forget about Snowvember or the Blizzard of 1977…
In places like Florida and other Southern states, it can be difficult to manage snowfall because they don’t have the snow plows or the drivers like we do in Buffalo.
Thanks to our local snow plow drivers, we are able to keep moving with our day, rarely experiencing major difficulties when it comes to your commute.
Snow plow drivers really should get more credit than they do. They are the unsung heroes of those cold nights. They leave the house when none of us want to go anywhere.
Sure, a mailbox may get knocked down every now and again, but if it weren’t for our snow plow drivers, we would be stuck for days – maybe even weeks at times.
I was fortunate to ride along in a snowplow with one of the Cheektowaga drivers, Matt Burdzy, who answered some questions that we all were curious about, including what roads get skipped (if any).
Once in a while, a snow plow may get the blame for knocking over a mailbox or two, but the drivers don’t really feel like that’s on them.
When asked if he has ever hit a mailbox, Burdzy responded, “No, I never hit the mailbox, normally the snow that comes off the wing hits the mailbox. We start the chain reaction of knocking the mailbox off its pedestal.”
So maybe don’t come after the man or woman plowing your street for knocking over your mailbox, when all they were trying to do was help you get to your destination safely.
And have you ever waited by the front window for a plow truck to come by, and never saw one?
But does that mean your street was skipped?
Burdzy said no.
“The town or city gives out the orders which streets to plow first,” Burdzy said. “In the towns, state roads, and country roads, every street gets plowed.”
However, Burdzy did say it can vary based on where you are located in Western New York.
“The city is a little different as they have more streets to plow, so they have a different way they get all the streets plowed.”
Do not fret – your assigned plow driver is on his/her way, I’m sure. And don’t take your frustrations out on them if your street is last on the list, because they have no control over what roads they are assigned.
Instead, thank your local plow driver for helping to clear off the roads so you're able to go about your day! After all, most of them work through the night so you don't have any issues on a morning commute.
“Every street and dead-end will be plowed multiple times in the town,” Burdzy assured.
Patience is a virtue, as you might have learned, and it really is just a waiting game.
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