City of Farmington Hills Department of Public Works (DPW) employees took part in Michigan’s first-ever Snow Plow Operator Training (SPOT), hosted on October 31 by the Metro Chapter of the American Public Works Association (APWA) at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi.
Teams of newer employees were paired with an experienced snow plow operator who served as the coach. Representing Farmington Hills were Mandy Rousseau (trainee), AJ Miller (trainee), and Matt Berzins (coach); and Joe Eudy (trainee), Pierce Moran (trainee), and Bob Saksewski (coach).
The all-day training session included both classroom instruction and driving the city’s own snow plows on a course that simulated actual road conditions.
DPW Maintenance Supervisor Bryan Pickworth participated as a classroom instructor and also played a major role on the committee that developed SPOT. Other DPW employees involved in the training included Sean Oswald, who fabricated items used on the course and provided drone photos; and Mike Delph, Sam Freeman, Jenessa Rankin, and DPW Superintendent Kevin McCarthy who provided a one-hour presentation on brine manufacturing and equipment maintenance.
When snow plowing operations get underway, major roads and school bus routes receive the highest priority; they are plowed and salted following any accumulation of snow or ice. Local subdivision streets are only plowed following an accumulation of four inches or more of snow. The City rotates which neighborhoods are plowed first after each snow event.
For more information about winter road maintenance, call the DPW at 248-871-2850.