City of Eau Claire working to smooth over rough roads - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

City of Eau Claire working to smooth over rough roads


Eau Claire (WQOW) - The winter is taking a toll on our roads. The most recent storm left layers of trouble behind. The city has been able to clear off the top layer of snow. Now it's the ice packed down on top of the pavement that is creating a bit of a bumpy ride for motorists.

"Our focus is on trying to get some of the ice removed so that we can get these streets back in good condition," said Steve Thompson, Eau Claire Street Maintenance Manager.

Brackett Avenue has been home to bumpy rides in the past, but Monday's drive may be the icing on the cake. Meanwhile, the city's street maintenance crews have been spreading salt to solve the problem.

"There's plenty of salt there, it's just getting the sun to activate it," Thompson said.

With 25 pieces of equipment in action, the city says it's working to remove ice buildups without ruining the roads.

"Our main plow trucks aren't really made for scraping. They don't want plow trucks that can dig into the pavement. So we have to go out and use graders and loaders," added Thompson.

As for what caused the problem? The city says Thursday night's snowstorm was a bad blend.

"With the amount of moisture and the cold pavement that we had, it turned to ice instantly. But you can't prevent that from happening," said Thompson.

And it's the weather that the city now needs to cooperate in order to get things smoothed over.

"Salt doesn't work real well once it gets down below ten degrees. So it's this time of day in the afternoon that it starts to work that we can try to start to scrape off some of the ice," Thompson said.

Thompson did tell us that city crews were out on Saturday during the day. But they did have Sunday off. Maintenance crews had been working 16 hour shifts since Thursday.

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