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Snow Banks and Snow Drifts: A Huge Problem

LEAF RIVER – Ample snowfall this winter has caused towering snow banks to stack up on the sides of the road. Snow banks in open areas are piled so high that some of them are being blown back into the roads. That's causing major headaches.
LEAF RIVER – It hasn't snowed since Sunday but some Stateline roads are still covered with snow. Mike Burright is an Ogle County plow driver, “Now the big thing is to get the--what we pushed from the road onto the shoulders get those pushed back as far as we can."

If not, this can be the scene: snow drifts turning state highways into one lane nightmares. But it's been tough because of how high the snow banks tower. Burright says, “Up, probably level with the top of this cab. 9 or 10 feet high."

With them so high, plow drivers aren't able to pile anymore snow on top of them. So they push part of the pile to the other side of the road to make them a more manageable size. It also minimizes drifting which has been the main concern for drivers, like Dan Bohnert, “The main problems have been the continuing winds and the drifting that continues to cover the roads even after the plows have taken over."

And Reggie Smith, “I had a couple friends of mine stuck in drifts."

That’s what Burright wants to avoid, folks getting stuck. But with the amount of snow we've seen and its consistent pattern, it becomes a round-the-clock battle, “We've been out for three, or probably six weeks now, I guess. Just about every day."
12 hour shifts working 7 days a week. That's been Burright's schedule for a while now, “I’m pretty tired of winter. I'm ready for spring haha."

Burright says the roads are pretty much up to par, but they have to make sure the snow banks are at a reasonable size to prepare for Thursday’s upcoming snow.
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