Snow control

  • Published
  • By Airman 1st Class Alyssa M. Akers
  • Minot Air Force Base Public Affairs

Last winter, Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota, received a record-breaking 52 inches of snow.

Although this amount doesn’t fall every year, Team Minot stays ready through the Minot AFB Snow and Ice Control Plan approved by base leadership.

“We have a snow and ice control plan that’s routed up through both wings,” said Tech. Sgt. Marcus Hines, 5th Civil Engineer Squadron NCO in charge of pavement and construction equipment. “We are given their mission requirements, then develop the plan accordingly.”

Every year, this plan is reviewed for accuracy and sent up to both 5th Bomb Wing and 91st Missile Wing commanders for approval before the end of the fiscal year. This date is set to ensure the plan is in place before the first snowfall of the season.

Additionally, pavement and construction equipment Airmen, aka “Dirtboyz”, attend a one-week snow school.

“We receive training on the loaders, sanders, blowers, and anything else we’d be using through the winter,” said Airman 1st Class Christopher Schroeder, 5th CES Dirtboy. “We also go through how to set-up for the winter.”

Despite all this training and preparation, Dirtboyz still experience some difficulty during winter when personnel and dependents drive during base closure.

“Some people don’t realize that when the base is closed due to weather, we still have a job to do,” added Schroeder. “If they’re out and about, it slows us down.”

Improperly parked cars also pose a problem.

“If you’re going to park your car while assigned to an alternate duty location, have a plan to move your car during the winter,” said Hines. “Parked cars make it difficult for us to complete our job. If it’s not moved, any car will get covered in snow and could affect future snow removal.”

According to Minot AFB’s Snow and Ice Control Plan, cars in uncleared lots are required to be moved to cleared lots.

In dormitory parking lots, the central dorm management team will be notified three days prior to snow-removal operations to ensure all vehicles will be moved. Any vehicles still located in parking lots will be ticketed by the 5th Security Forces Squadron or towed at the owner’s expense.

For Airmen at an alternate duty location, or on leave for longer than a week, the squadron mobility NCOs or squadron orderly rooms will verify if the individual has taken care of their vehicle by parking it in the temporary duty location parking lot or leaving a key with someone who can move it.

There are three designated TDY parking lots.

At 220 Tanker Trail, Airman Leadership School, vehicles owned by missile field security Airmen may be parked in the row closest to the road and part of the next row. Other dormitory residents may park their cars in the remaining spots.

At 587 Tanker Trail, softball field parking area, vehicles may be parked up to the first two light posts.

At 455 Summit Drive, Pride Building, vehicles may be parked in the east parking lot.

To stay ahead of inclement weather, download the free Team Minot mobile app from the Google Play Store or iTunes.

Installation status updates will be sent as push notifications directly to a smartphone.