Companies Reap Benefits of Blizzard

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HONESDALE -- It has only taken a week but most everyone in part of Wayne County has been plowed out of the Blizzard of 2017.

While some companies cashed in, others broke even because of the historic storm.

A front-end loader tried to find a storm drain covered in feet of snow at the K-Mart near Honesdale. The blizzard last week dropped more than 2 feet of snow across the area and snow removal companies had their hands full.

"It was a constant battle, I have a chain attached to the back of my truck to pull me out of the snow banks. Loaders, everything we were stuck," said Chaz Augello of Augello Excavating.

Augello had 26 drivers handling roughly 100 customers including the big parking lots at Wal-Mart and K-Mart. New customers were calling for help but the snow removal company found itself in need of help after getting stuck in the snow numerous times and the deep snow took a heavy toll on equipment.

"If you talk to any plow guy they'll say it's more profitable to plow six inches than 36 inches, easier on equipment, less chances of getting stuck," he added.

Removing so much snow from downtown Honesdale does come at a cost. Pioneer Construction and Leeward spent a little less than a week putting all that snow at the pool complex and softball field at a cost of a little more than $100,000 to taxpayers.

Now, all the sidewalks and streets are clear in the borough and businesses can get back to making money while some other communities wait for the piles of snow on their streets to melt.

"I saw piles two stories high. Thank goodness they're not there anymore. So we love that, we really do," said Jute Bishop, owner of Interior Design Gallery.

As for that costly snow removal, Honesdale borough officials hope to recoup some of the money down the road with the help of the state but for now, they will have to pay for it out-of-pocket.

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