ODOT to hire 500 seasonal snow plow drivers

Credit: Marshall Gorby

Credit: Marshall Gorby

While most Ohioans are thinking about falling leaves it won’t be long before snow starts falling in the Buckeye State. The Ohio Department of Transportation is beginning to prepare for winter and is hiring about 500 seasonal snow plow drivers.

ODOT has more than 3,500 drivers who often work 12-hour shifts during snow events. Though most are full-time drivers, the state also has auxiliary drivers who fill in and plow when needed. The state also uses a third group of drivers who are hired each season.

“Like every other employer right now, we are struggling to find qualified workers to fill these positions this year,” said ODOT Director Jack Marchbanks. “We’re doing everything we can to recruit the help we need to supplement our winter operations, but we do have concerns about finding drivers and mechanics in this challenging job market.”

ODOT aims to have main roads cleared within two hours of a snow event and secondary roads back up within four hours. Last year, drivers hit that goal 95% of the time, according to the state. If ODOT is unable to hire enough plow drivers, it could take longer for roads to be cleared.

“Our men and women take great pride in ensuring you have the safest conditions possible to get where you need to go and that will never change,” Marchbanks said. “What might, unfortunately, change is the speed with which we’re able to accomplish that important task.”

Anyone interested in applying to be a plow driver should visit https://careers.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/careers/.

To prepare for snow, about 300 mechanics are performing 150-point checks on equipment to make sure repairs are done before snow plows hit the roads. ODOT also has more than 770,000 tons of salt ahead of winter.

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