Grand Forks County clearing out nearly 100 blocked roads
Typically the county plows them to keep them open, but said that this year the task has become impossible.
GRAND FORKS — Despite not a single flake falling from the sky, plows are still working to move several feet of snow in Grand Forks County.
They're busy trying to dig out roads they gave up on for part of the winter.
Grand Forks County Highway Department Superintendent John Cash admits it's been quite the learning experience. This is his first winter on the job after taking over for his predecessor who had been with the highway department for nearly 60 years.
For the past three years, Cash has been one of the two-dozen workers focused on digging out after a storm. This year he's overseeing the dig out process.
One of those crews was working to break through a closed township road near Thompson, North Dakota.
"It hasn't been the winter with the most snow, but it has been the winter with the most challenges," said plow driver Luke Myrun.
Numerous windy days with constantly blowing snow has made it nearly impossible to keep the roads that go from East to West open.
Just after breaking through several feet of snow on the township road, the plow shut down after a fluid line broke.
"It's been the story of the winter. There's rarely a day where every piece of equipment is going at the same time. There's usually one or two that are always having issues. You fix one and another one breaks. It's a continuation," Myrun said.
In all, about 100 township roads that are normally plowed have not been plowed for the past couple weeks. Homeowners in these areas have a way out, it just may not be the quickest.
"All we can ask for is a little patience, a little patience from our community. We are trying our hardest," said plow driver Kyle Moen.
While some are focused on roads, eight excavators were out Wednesday, March 29, clearing culverts in anticipation of a potential major flood this spring.
"I had hair before it started," Moen said. "It's been a tough go. We are ready for it to be over with."