Springdale administrators hope a new online system will help their road workers be more efficient while fighting winter weather.
The city of Springdale has implemented a web-based system that allows city officials to track equipment and trucks during winter weather. They can use the software to monitor trucks that are pre-treating roads before a weather event or cleaning up the roads after the weather hits.
“It enables us to track the vehicles, as they are spreading salt on the roadway in pre-treatment mode,” said Sam Goade, the city’s public works director. “It creates a data base for where they have been and when they have been there.”
Goade said the software itself has been around for several years. He said city administrators first used it during a weather event earlier this month.
“We found out how long it takes us to cover 161 lane miles of roadway that we are pre-treating,” he said. “It is taking us five hours with three trucks. That’s too long.”
Goade said the software system allows city officials to better allocate resources before and after inclement weather. The system also helps the public.
“If they have questions they can give us a call,” said Mayor Doug Sprouse. “If they say they have not seen a truck, we can go back and say while you didn’t see one, one was there. Or, if they do need attention and the truck hasn’t treated the road then we can get our crews out and get it taken care of.”
Right now only city officials have access to the system, but Sprouse said getting the public access is the goal.
“I mean certainly we would jump at that chance if we could,” he said. “We will just have to see what’s possible with what we can afford to do, but that would be a great goal.”
Springdale road workers currently use a mixture of salt, grit and beet juice to pre-treat the streets. Administrators are also looking to add more snow plows and a salt storage building to aid against winter weather.