Wichita brings in help to plow streets
The city of Wichita is responding to the snow emergency by activating contracts with private companies that have heavy snow plow equipment.
At a news conference Thursday morning, Public Works Deputy Director Joe Pajor said crews got behind during the overnight hours.
"We experienced considerable snowfall, at times in excess of a rate of two inches or more per hour," Pajor said. "We had white-out conditions or near white-out conditions several times during the night."
The city has 50 trucks and 100 snow plow operators who are trading off 12-hour shifts, 24 hours a day.
The storm is among Wichita's 20 greatest snow events in history. If significant snowfall occurs later Thursday, it could crack the top 10. Wednesday's 6.2 inches of snow broke a 101-year-old record by one inch for Feb. 20.
"The contractors that we're bringing in will provide an additional 21 operators and 21 pieces of equipment," Pajor said.
Depending on snowfall amounts for Thursday, Pajor said he believes all the city's major arteries can be cleared by the Friday morning rush hour.