The Connecticut Department of Transportation has (CTDOT) added 114 new snowplow trucks to battle the winter season that will replace aging equipment that was prone to breaking down.
State officials, including Gov. Dan Malloy, unveiled the new equipment earlier this month. Malloy said the new trucks, some of which have smaller plows, will reduce the need for repairs and make snow removal efforts more efficient. The state spent $17 million on the trucks, reports the Hartford Courant.
The average age of plow trucks being replaced is 16 years, which is about four years beyond than their scheduled replacement cycle. The agency maintains a fleet of 632 trucks, including 275 that have been identified as overdue for replacement. The agency has agreements with 205 private contractors to assist in snow removal, according to a release.
"The efficiency comes from the use of wing plows so we can actually plow wider things with the use of a single truck or double wings, which is a huge width, so we can plow the highways, the interstate much faster," DOT Commissioner James Redeker told Fox61.
The cost of the agency's standard plow truck package has resulted in a savings of over $32,000 per truck. Additional cost-savings resulted from the purchase of tandem double-wing plows that allow clearing of over 24 feet of road in a single pass and are resulting in savings of over $32,000 per unit over like-item trucks purchased in the past, the agency reported.
The new trucks have heated windows, warmer lights, and comfier seats. Operators can spend up to 24 hours in the trucks during a shift.
The CTDOT covers a roadway network of more than 10,800 lane miles.