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178th Civil Engineering Squadron hard at work against winter weather

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With winter in full effect, severe weather and storms are always a high possibility. Luckily, with the hard work and dedication of the 178th Civil Engineering Squadron, base personnel do not have to worry about roads and sidewalks being hazardous.

Due to the small size of 178th CES, state employees are hired to provide maintenance to the facilities and grounds. Snow removal on base is one of their responsibilities.

Although it may seem to be an easy task, snow removal is time consuming and requires a tremendous amount of skill. The employees are able to efficiently execute their job with precision and skill. 

“The vehicles used are large and cumbersome, and putting them to use in tight spaces can cause damage to both the vehicles and base buildings or property,” said Senior Master Sgt. Timothy Doohen, the superintendent assigned to the 178th CES. “Our state workers are true professionals when dealing with snow and ice. They take just as much pride in doing their job safely and effectively as any uniform-wearing member of the 178th Wing does.”

The employees handle the snow removal for all of the base including roads, sidewalks and parking lots. Dump trucks with blades, pickup trucks with blades, and sweeper attachments on lawn mowers are a few of the types of equipment that are used to clear snow and ice.

When there is forecasted winter weather, the 178th CES plans for how many people and equipment they will need in order to clear the roads and sidewalks on base.

“Whether it’s going to happen middle of the day, first thing in the morning, or at night, we are always contacting the state employees [and] putting them on notice,” said Doohen.

However, severe winter weather can be very unpredictable. The employees must always be ready to respond at all hours of the day.

“[The employees] know that that whenever a storm is on the way, whether it’s been forecasted or not, that they are always on the hook and could get called,” said Doohen. “They come out right away when we need them.”

Regardless of the severity of weather conditions, the employees come in to work in order to ensure safety of all base personnel.

“They drive in under adverse conditions that nobody wants to drive in,” said Doohen.  “They do it because they are concerned about the base and the safety of the base population. They come in no questions asked at crazy hours, bad roads, and get all the roads cleared so that when the base population comes, they’re going to be safe.”

Snow removal is critical in ensuring that base personnel are able to drive and walk safely on base to get to work. Through the hard work and dedication of the state employees of the 178th CES, the 178th Wing is able to operate effectively even with the onset of severe winter weather.