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City: Crews handled storm as well as possible

Bob Morehead

Herald Staff Writer

Three of Barberton’s 10 plow trucks broke down during the Sunday night/Monday morning snowstorm but the other seven kept rolling through Tuesday.

Safety director Elizabeth Daugherty read an after-action summary to the Streets, Sidewalks and Lighting Committee at city council’s Jan. 18 committee work session.

According to the summary, drafted by the Service Department, crews laid a heavy layer of salt ahead of the storm. Because the snow was light, most drivers went home to sleep while three trucks worked through the night. Around 4 a.m. Monday, when the worst of the storm hit, all trucks were deployed.

“We did have a couple ambulances get stuck,” Barberton Fire Chief Robert Pursley told council. “That’s normal for something like this. It’s nice when we can go out with a plow truck in tandem but that isn’t always possible.”

Fortunately, the worst that happened is some paramedics had to get out and push a bit, he said.

Three trucks broke down but the remainder worked a 14-hour shift, a three-person crew taking over afterward until the other drivers were rested. At least three plow trucks rolled around the clock Sunday night through Tuesday. Daugherty said the rough average for overtime is 14.5 hours.

“Someone told me this was the most snow in the shortest time since 1948,” Daugherty said. “Under the circumstances, I think our crews did an amazing job.”

The Environmental Health and Social Services Committee voted to appoint Mary Jo Goss to represent Barberton on the Summit County Board of Health. A Summa Health System registered nurse with more than 30 years’ experience, she has served several years on Barberton’s own health board.

In Planning, Annexation and Codes, Councilman Shaun “Rocky” Jaber told his colleagues that Gissnier Welding, currently a Wadsworth company, has bought and will move into the former L&L Trucking building on Barber Road.

The Finance and Personnel Committee voted to send a resolution to the floor honoring building inspector Charlie Ries for his nearly 40 years of service with the city, starting part-time on the Street Department in 1986. With the Building Department, Ries was Employee of the Year in 2017 and 2021. He was also a reserve officer with the police department for 20 years.


  1. Caine on February 8, 2022 at 6:56 am

    The street plowers did a nice job…better the second big snowfall than the first. However, where’s the mailman??? We have had three days of no mail. The latest was Monday, Feb. 7. What ever happened to, “Neither rain, nor snow, nor dark of night shall keep this carrier from his appointed rounds.” Stamps go up, service goes down!

  2. Ray on January 26, 2022 at 2:28 pm

    The city should contract it out. Would be more efficient and save some $$$$. Matter of fact many city services could be contracted out.

  3. G on January 24, 2022 at 9:46 am

    Probably the same person who comments on Barberton Schools even tho you home school your kid.

  4. A on January 23, 2022 at 11:04 am

    Did NOT see a plow truck but once during the first snow and zero 1/23/22 on even the main roads. Did see one plow truck following another with the second one moving no snow whatsoever. Maybe plow school would help get snow removal more efficient. The city knew the last snow was coming with little to no response.

  5. Anonymous on January 20, 2022 at 7:11 am

    You are probably the same person who hasn’t shoveled your sidewalk, you can’t expect the driver’s to work 48 hours straight

  6. M on January 19, 2022 at 9:11 am

    correction for my comment. Good thing my neighbors did not have a medical emergency.

  7. M on January 19, 2022 at 9:07 am

    I believe that was a poor response probably the worst I’ve seen in my 30+ yrs living in Barberton. They should have run more trucks. They didnt have to keep the roads perfectly clear during the storm just prevent the snow from getting too deep on the roads given the snow fall rates this storm had. Mainly to ensure Police, Fire, and Ambulances could respond to emergency calls. Also to ensure those who work at the hospital and at private sector companies who do snow removal can get to work. My street was untouched until yesterday between 7:30 AM and 5:20PM until then I was one of maybe 4 people who live on the street who could even drive on the street because the snow was 10″ deep. Good thing none of my neighbors had an emergency medical issue because an ambulance would not have made it down my street without getting stuck.

  8. NB on January 19, 2022 at 5:38 am

    Not on my road, they failed, and do not care….think driver may have had a feud with a few houses, so left a foot and a half of snow on the street.

  9. Hype on January 18, 2022 at 9:23 pm

    The Blizzard of 1978 dropped 24″ in a few hours overnight. THAT is the most in that time frame. This storm wasn’t even close to that magnitude. But they did good cleaning up considering the circumstances.

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