NY DOT is ready with new plows, whether there's snow or not

Dec 23, 2015

Drivers will be seeing a new kind of snow plow on roads across New York state this winter. Tow plows will be attached to the large dump trucks that traditionally are used as snow plows.

The New York State Department of Transportation showed off these new high-tech plows at the state fairgrounds in Syracuse this week. During a torrential downpour, the plows – which are twice as long as the ones motorists are used to seeing -- ended up pushing puddles instead of snow. But state Transportation Department Commissioner Matt Driscoll says you still get a sense of how a snow plow driver can hydraulically adjust the plow, that's attached to a trailer, to swing out to the side of the truck, effectively doubling the amount of road that can be plowed.

"I’ve driven in them myself with these drivers, and it’s amazing how nimble they are, and how quickly they can pivot in and out, so they are really highly effective,” said Driscoll.

Along with plowing 24 feet of road at once, they only require one driver, so it’s a more efficient way to move snow. Driscoll says the new plows also include improved safety measures, with cameras all around

“The drivers can see everything much like many of the cars today, when you back up you have that. This technology is even more advanced than what you have in a typical car. They have screens and they can see everything,” he said.

Driscoll is warning motorists not to be surprised, when they see one of the plows doing its job.

“They’ve not seen something like this before. And when the operator uses the arm to swing the blade out, people might be alarmed initially, because they’ve never seen it.” 


Driscoll says the 62 plows, which cost about $100,000 a piece, are stationed across the state, and can be sent to areas that need it, as part of a statewide preparedness plan. They were purchased as part of the governors New York Responds program.