DPW, Eversource were ready to roll before the snowstorm began

Staff photo by Adam Urquhart A plow is topped off with salt before heading out to treat Nashua streets as the snow started falling Wednesday afternoon.

NASHUA – With upwards of at least 12 inches of snow expected to accumulate across the state over night and into this morning, municipal crews and plow operators were gearing up for the worst Wednesday afternoon.

Crews in Nashua have been monitoring the weather and will initiate operations as radar shows it’s needed.

“We start out with an initial

pre-salt, with 12 pre-salt runs throughout the city,” Superintendent of Streets Jon Ibarra said. “Then as the snow starts to accumulate around 2 inches we start scraping and do the primary streets first, then neighborhoods and secondaries.”

After that, Ibarra said the crew just keeps going. A typical run will take three to four hours to get through.

“If we’re getting an inch or more an hour the roads will probably be snow covered,” Ibarra said.

To clear the roadways, the Department of Public Works utilizes roughly 80 pieces of equipment during a storm.

While DPW crews handle the plowing and salting, Eversource also has units stationed statewide ready to restore power if outages occur. Eversource has been holding meetings throughout the week in preparation of this storm, including monitoring what area’s are expecting to be hit hardest so resources can be directed quicker to those locations.

“We do have hundreds of line, tree and service workers positioned throughout the state ready to respond as needed,” Eversource spokesperson Kaitlyn Woods said. “We also have additional contract crews with hundreds of workers ready to respond and several crews brought down from Canada, as well.”

With a significant amount of snow expected to hit Greater Nashua, Eversource encourages its customers to take precautions in the case of a power outage.

“We do have crews in the Nashua area ready to respond to any outages that may occur,” Woods said.

She said www.readynh.gov/ is a great resource for storm preparation.

“We prepare year round for storms like this by investing in proactive tree trimming programs and by investing in upgrades that modernize and harden our systems so when storms do occur it’s more resilient,” Woods said.

Nashua declared a snow emergency that ran from 10 p.m. Wednesday until 6 a.m. today. It will be adjusted if weather conditions change. The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather warning for Nashua until 1 p.m. today.

“We are recommending residents limit travel if possible,” according to a city press release. “Give yourself extra time if you need to be on the road. Residents should only expect primary routes to be cleared initially during this storm. Residential side streets will not be plowed immediately. Regularly plowed sidewalks will not be plowed until crews have a chance to clear primary and residential streets.”

During the snow emergency there is no on-street parking or municipal surface lot parking allowed. Free parking will be available in the Elm Street and High Street garages and the overnight parking program is suspended.

During the time of the snow emergency the city will be towing vehicles remaining on the street and in the municipal surface lots and owners of towed vehicles may retrieve them at the Solid Waste Department and must pay a fine of $315 (cash, money order of credit card only). Also, towed cars may be picked up at the landfill scale house at all times during the snow emergency and after the snow emergency has been lifted, cars may be picked up between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. People can call the Public Works snow line at 589-4795 for up to date information.

“We encourage people to stay at home so we can do a good job of cleaning the roads,” Ibarra said.

Adam Urquhart can be reached at 594-1206 or aurquhart@nashuatelegraph.com.