New Haven Digs Out After Nor'easter Leaves a Foot of Snow

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Snowblowers fired up around New Haven on Tuesday, the attempt to dig out became a bit more of a chore than some would like.

“It’s hard to move, it really is,” said Anthony Ciarelli. “It’s really heavy. And now it’s getting heavy because it warmed up in temperature.”

The snow got the better of the blowers. Ciarelli’s machine broke so he was on number two, one he borrowed from his neighbor Arnold Troqe.

“Without the snow blower it’s going to be a lot of sweat,” said Troqe.

While residents tried to dig out, Jason Padilla was clearing a way through Fair Haven streets. He’s been at it for 11 years.

“I love it. I love it,” he said Tuesday afternoon.  

NBC Connecticut followed him on his route, where he can spend up to sixteen hours a day, clearing the way for the people he’s gotten to know.

“I’ll just come over and move their snow right after they move their vehicle so that way, they can park in the spot right in front of their house,” said Padilla.

He says the biggest challenge are those cars combined with large amounts of snow. It can take a lot of hours circling streets, trying to move it around cars not following parking bans.

“Sometimes we can’t get into some streets because there’s too many cars parked up on the street,” he said.

Mayor Justin Elicker said 99 cars were towed as of Tuesday morning. He gave the update while thanking public works crews for their around-the-clock efforts.

“Coffee and donuts are just a small thanks but what’s more important is that we give you the public thanks that you all deserve,” said Elicker.

As residents tried to dig out to get back on the road, some said they were happy with the clearing work.

“Pretty well actually compared to some other years,” said Jess Paiva. “It’s nice that people actually moved their cars to the side of the street this year.”  

Emma Tarley says she was glad to get out and come back to find a spot in front of her home.

“I knew it was probably going to be a challenge, but I definitely got lucky,” said Tarley. “Parked for the day. Yeah, not going to give up my spot.”

Others would like to see more parking enforcement by the city in residential neighborhoods to make way for better clearing work.

“I’m happy for what they did today and yesterday. But before that, they barely clean a way. They just go right up the middle [of the street],” said Troqe.

The city is asking for patience. Clearing side roads and walkways will take a bit of time. Padilla is ready for it -- long shifts and all.

“It’s just like everything. Everybody gets a little tired you know after that long period of time, but we’re used to it,” said Padilla. “You know. Just a regular day at work.”

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