By Dan Diggins
Winters in New England can be unpredictable when it comes to storms and the precipitation they bring. In a bad weather predicament, Sacred Heart University’s Campus Operations is ready to help keep the campus safe and clear.
Campus Operations used to have to deal with the snow and ice with 15 people and a couple of John Deere tractors with plows. Now, they team up with Mallozzi contractors to get the job done. The contractor provides 40 to 50 workers along with the necessary machinery for each storm.
“The minute we find out there’s a storm we give our outside contractor a call,” said John Rose, Supervisor of Purchasing and Inventory for the university’s campus operations.
Sacred Heart hires a snow removal team arrives as soon as possible to begin the process. They provide the university with removal machinery such as bobcats, bucket loaders, John Deere tractors and snow-blowers.
“The guys are out there the duration of the storm, with the exception of a couple hours to sleep if it’s a long one,” said Rose.
As the team works to clear the snow, they continuously put down salt. They believe that salt is the most effective way to make the walkways safer for students. The workers put down salt multiple times including the days following the storm.
However, some students do not believe they are putting enough salt down.
“I think the school should salt more on the sidewalks because it is very icy and slippery and many people I know have fallen,” said sophomore Mariel Rondinelli. “Christian Witness Commons lot is poorly done. I have had a hard time driving there because the snow is not plowed well enough so it makes it harder to drive through.”
Christian Witness Commons is not the only residential parking lot thought to have poor conditions.
“I have a car parked here [Scholars Commons] and it’s almost impossible to get out for like two days after the storm,” said sophomore Nick Falciglia.
Students used to be able to borrow shovels from Campus Operations, a privilege that has been taken away from students not returning equipment. Now students can call campus operations or public safety who will come help dig cars out of the snow.
Not all students are unhappy with the job the snow removal team has done.
“The walk from Roncalli is actually well done. I haven’t had much trouble with it at all,” said freshman Dom Allegrini.
Campus Operations advises students to be prepared for more possible bad weather for March.
“It’s New England, you know you’re going out in ice. Wear the proper shoes and be prepared,” said Rose.