DOT says its ready, and we’ve seen it before

The preparation for the upcoming storm began when the last one ended, said Kevin Nursick, spokesman for the state Department of Transportation. Equipment was repaired and checked, supplies were stockpiled and staffing was coordinated.

“We’re ready,” Nursick said on Thursday morning. “We’re out pre-treating roads, bridges and problem areas on all of the state’s highways with a salt brine solution, and we have 632 state plows and 200 contractors ready to go.

“The timing of this is helping us,” Nursick said. “Two inches of snow during a weekday rush hour can be worse than a blizzard on a Saturday. But once this major weather event hits, we’d advise people to stay off the roads unless its absolutely essential. It isn’t the time for sightseers; we need to keep the roads open for emergency responders.”

The DOT spokesman declined to compare what’s coming with what is considered the granddaddy of all winter storms, the Blizzard of February, 1978. “We don’t have anybody left here who was working then,” Nursick said. “But we’ve all seen storms like this many, many times before. We’ll get through it. There’s no reason to panic.”

Frank Juliano