Snow Removal Woes as Augusta, Maine Faces Driver Shortage
It seems like the last few years of fairly mild Maine winters is catching up with us all at once. It's not only taking a toll on our own personal snowblowers and shovels, but also on many Public Works departments in the Pine Tree State as well.
According to WMTW, the City of Augusta is beginning to feel the strain as officials say they don't have an adequate number of plow drivers to get the job done in the time they typically do.
Public Works Director, Leslie Jones, says that they (The City of Augusta) will swap drivers out every 12-14 hours during a storm and that typically they like to have 21 drivers on for each shift.
Unfortunately, due to factors like COVID, an aging workforce and young people not seeking out commercial drivers licenses like they used to, the city is finding it harder to keep up on snow removal projects, especially when these larger storms strike.
Public Works Director, Leslie Jones, told WMTW News 8,
"What we do in a big storm like this is we would split them up into two shifts of about 12 to 14 hours each. Because of the shortage, we only ended up with about 14 drivers for each shift. And we'd like to have 21 In a perfect world. There's not a huge pool of them [candidates] You've got an aging workforce. Being a CDL (commercial drivers license) driver isn't necessarily what some of the young people want to do. But certainly that pandemic and COVID has impacted the number of CDL drivers we have."
If you or someone you know is interested in a job with Augusta Public Works, or would like to learn more about available positions within the city, just click here to access Augusta Maine's official website.
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