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Winter's first big snow costs Newton $800,000

Posted December 22, 2008 04:06 PM

It was a costly weekend nor'easter in Newton.

Three days of round-the-clock plowing and salting cost the city around $800,000, said David Turocy, Newton's deputy commissioner of public works.

It was one of the more expensive storms in recent years, he said, a massive effort requiring 160 street plows, eight sidewalk plows, and 5,000 tons of road salt to clear Newton's 310 miles of roadway of the 12-plus inches the series of snowstorms dumped on the city.

"We appreciate a weekend storm, because it's usually easier to deal with, but not when it lasts all weekend," he said.

The city's snow removal costs were about $3 million last year, with an above-average number of storms requiring plowing.

Turocy said officials hope fervently to spend less this year, though this storm did not get the season off to a cheap start.

"This was a tough one because it never let up and so many people were on the roads'' shopping, he said. "We were reluctant to tow people because of the season, but cars on the streets did make it harder and we had to work around them."

The city used up almost all of its salt supplies over the weekend, but new shipments were arriving today, he said.

-- Erica Noonan

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