Getting Ready for Snow, Already

DOT Holds "Roadeo" for snowplow drivers

On Wednesday, snowplow drivers from across the state took to the streets of Connecticut, even though it's late summer. It's an annual tradition.

"It's nice to get the plow on the truck before the winter, feel it out," Mike Cilley, a driver from Middletown, said.

A few months before the first snowflakes hit the ground, the Department of Transportation pulls out its big dogs for a test run.

"You learn you can't turn the truck that far or you backed up too far. You can judge your distances and you’re all set after that," Cilley said.

Thirty one drivers or "snow fighters" were selected to participate. Since 2001, the DOT has been training its drivers with written tests, then they're brought to the course for a hands-on test.

To spice things up, judges gave out trophies to the best drivers this year.

"We want to emphasize safety and training and best practices," DOT Commissioner Joe Marie said.

The practice day is a day of work for the drivers. The event costs the state about $2,000.

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