LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A steady barrage of midday snow blanketed Kentucky on Thursday, and road crews are still working through Friday to clear off roads for safe commuting.
Despite a COVID-related staffing shortage within its Public Works department, the Louisville Metro government has been able to adapt to the situation to ensure its expansive Snow Team can get the job done.
What You Need To Know
- The Louisville Metro Snow Team is working to clear roads even in the face of staffing shortages
- 14% of Public Works is out due to COVID-related reasons, officials said
- Public Works is just one part of Snow Team coordination efforts, and contingency policies prevent services from being impacted or delayed
- The Louisville area saw around 3 inches of snow in Thursday's flurries
Officials with Louisville Metro said as of Friday, Jan. 7, 62 of Public Works' 450 employees are out "due to COVID-related reasons." Around half are positive cases, with the others in quarantine due to possible exposure.
That shortage hasn't impacted or delayed any services, officials said.
"Because Public Works is an operation-oriented department, contingency staffing policies have been standard operating procedure," an official told Spectrum News in an email. "Those policies, which include overtime, have been altered as needed throughout the pandemic to ensure our services are delivered with minimal interruption or delay."
Those services include waste collection, paving, road inspections and snow removal.
Public Works isn't the sole entity in charge of Louisville's snow removal — that responsibility lies with the official Snow Team, a multi-department partnership tasked with clearing roads, highways, bridges and more during snow events like the one Kentucky saw on Thursday.
Public Works’ Roads & Operations, Solid Waste Management Services and Signs & Markings Divisions, Metro Parks, the Department of Codes & Regulations and the Department of Fleet Services each lend a hand in all Snow Team efforts.
"This has allowed us to maintain the staffing levels necessary to safely complete the work associated with this snow event," officials told Spectrum News.
All Louisville Metro personnel are performing tasks for which they are properly trained, which includes drivers, officials said.