Claremore City Manager John Feary praised the city's response to the brutal winter storm this past week.
“All in all, I’m very pleased with how Claremore handled a very tumultuous 10 day-period,” Feary said Friday. “We were there for each other and got to every emergency that we were needed at. I’m just very pleased.”
Over the course of the winter storm, the city used 150 tons of salt and sand. Claremore has at least 58 lane miles of main roadways that they prioritize when plowing and treatment. In total, the city maintains almost 300 lane miles of public streets and alleyways in and throughout the city.
Feary said they are calculating how many gallons of brine they used to pretreat the roads and bridges.
“We put that down before anything comes in because it causes a chemical reaction that keeps it melted off,” he said
Feary said the city doesn't specifically budget for storms.
“There’s something in the maintenance budget budget for streets each year,” he sad. “So they have an overall budget for those types of things.”
Feary said there have been years where they haven’t had to get a snow or ice truck out. Because that material doesn’t go bad, they can save it.
“Each year there’s maybe an event where some sleet comes in, but as far as to this extent of snow and ice for that prolonged period of time, I think we’d have to go back to 2011,” he said. “Prior to that it was 2007.”
Feary said they are expecting to see more leaks in pipes as the temperature rises and the ground begins to shift.
“We often will see more and worse water leaks during the thaw then we do during the freeze,” he said.
Over the course of the storm Feary said the city experienced four major water line breaks.
Feary said they are also anticipate issues with potholes. Feary said asphalt patches will shrink when it’s cold. The patches will bust as traffic increases and temperatures rise.
“In one day, you can see drastic changes,” he said. “We will definitely have issues on some of our asphalt streets.”
Feary said they will begin tackling these issues once their workers get a proper rest.
“Our water, sewer, streets, sanitation, fire and police have just been exemplary through this and it has just been very, very challenging,” he said “I can not say enough of those departments. They were phenomenal.”
Feary said the men and women within those departments are the reason people had water and power.
“The community owes them a debt of gratitude,” he said. “Those are the people that make a city function and run.”
Feary said he wanted to thank the citizens for taking care of one another.
“At the end of the day, the government can only do so much,” he said. “There were probably countless tales that we will never know about of people helping others. I know our neighbors step up and help each other and that’s appreciated.”