Snow clearing crews work in front of Ostrander hall
Photo by Jean Germano

The University of Wisconsin-Superior (UWS) campus was rocked by a snowstorm during the Thanksgiving weekend that dumped over 20 inches of snow across the region. With such massive snowfall, work crews employed by the university, city, and county governments were hard at work to get main roads and pathways accessible. Unfortunately, this work came at the cost of residential areas, leaving many students, both on- and off-campus, trapped in their homes. UWS and many schools across the Twin Ports region cancelled school on Monday, Dec. 2 and Tuesday, Dec. 3.

The plow crew from SSC Services Corporation, a contractor that provides maintenance services at UWS, started doing plow work on Sunday, Dec. 1. Early the next day, the full crew of five workers began again, working to open roads and pathways. Diesel-powered plowing equipment is kept inside heated garage facilities across the campus to prevent fuel gelling.

The top priorities for university plowing start with clearing fire lanes, followed by the parking lots at the Yellowjacket Union and between the Jim Dan Hill Library and the Holden Fine and Applied Arts Center. Once the Marcovich Wellness Center lot is cleared, crews move to the wider university grounds.

It can be a challenging task with the clearance of student lots being a case of threading the needle, as plow drivers try their best to clear snow near snowed-in student vehicles. Ultimately, digging out a vehicle is a student’s responsibility and crews generally cannot assist snowed-in vehicles due to liability reasons.

Brayden Ward, SSC’s unit director on campus, noted that SSC has been clearing snow continuously throughout the week. “I would like to thank the students for following request to vacate their vehicles from dorm lots,” said Ward. He admitted that like local government, SSC has received a number of complaints about snow clearance.