Q & A with Colorado Springs operation manager on incoming snowstorm

An undated photo of a snow plow during a snow event in Colorado Springs.
An undated photo of a snow plow during a snow event in Colorado Springs.(KKTV)
Published: Mar. 12, 2021 at 8:26 AM MST
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - The biggest snow event of the season is now just hours away, and Colorado Springs city officials are falling back on a familiar request.

Just stay home.

Our 11 Breaking Weather team currently projects the storm will ramp up significantly starting Saturday, bringing with it colder temperatures, heavy snow for many, and strong winds. Travel conditions north of the Springs in particular could be very dangerous. Within the city proper, plow crews are always focused on primary and secondary routes first, with neighborhoods the lowest priority.

11 News reporter Spencer Wilson posed a series of questions to Colorado Springs Operations Manager Jack Ladley. These were his responses:

How am I going to get out of my neighborhood if there’s 14 inches of snow?

“You won’t.”

How much snow does it take until the city plows side roads and neighborhood streets?

“Six inches of accumulated snow on the residential areas, and they will come in.”

Ladley warns that when plows do make it to your street, it can create new issues.

“People are mad when we come in after they clear off their own driveways. The spray from a plow can mess that up.”

Are you planning to get into some neighborhoods for this storm?

“Yes, we will. Normally, generally speaking, we get more up north, less down south. I have a small residential team -- eight to 10 trucks, 4x4s -- that have two snow managers assigned. If there is an area north that is worse, they will send snow plow manager, they measure 6 inches or more, and they go in with 4x4.

“When its across the whole city, it’s harder to do. Everyone is just hosed "

Should someone park on the side of the road -- even it it’s in front of their house? Why or why not?

“No, if you can, get out of the street. One: if super heavy snow, hard to distinguish snow drift from car. Two: when they go in, not a lot of space to put snow. So they are going to pack up against your car.”

Is the city preparing to shut down any major roads?

“No, not if we can help it!”

In the time Ladley has been here, they never have.

“When CDOT shuts down I-25, it pushes people onto our streets. Voyager and Woodman need to stay open to get people off the interstate.”

The best course of action is go into this weekend expecting to be snowed in.

Our meteorologists say the system should gradually move out Sunday night, with improving weather coming in for Monday.

Stay on top of the storm with our special 11 Weather app.

Android users: Click here to download the 11 Breaking Weather App.

iPhone/Apple users: Click here to download the 11 Breaking Weather App.

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