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NYS adding 500 workers to snow fighting force this winter

Posted at 1:05 PM, Aug 26, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-28 18:43:38-04
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The New York State Department of Transportation is adding 500 workers to help keep roads safe this winter. 65 of those jobs are in our area.

"We are actively gearing up for our snow and ice season which is right around the corner," said Susan Serdej, Regional Public Information Officer for the DOT.

Each September, the agency begins to hire and train staff on equipment and practices so they are ready to plow as soon as winter strikes.

"When the lake snow starts, we need all the trucks manned on the roadways and our current staffings are a little low at the time," said Ray Fuleski, Highway Maintenance Supervisor.

Both permanent and seasonal positions are available across the state. Employees can expect a base salary plus overtime pay when needed. There is also an allowance for footwear.

They're looking for workers in the following counties:

  • Cattaraugus
  • Chautauqua
  • Erie
  • Niagara

Starting pay for first time employees is around $15/hr, per the DOT's website.

"Shifts are traditionally 8 hours, but they can be extended to 12 hour shifts depending on weather conditions...in the harshest weather we staff 24/7, so there's good opportunities for overtime as the weather allows also," said Surdej.

"Our maintenance workers are the heart and soul of everything we do at DOT, especially during New York's harsh winter season," NYSDOT Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said. "They play a vital role during and after winter storms, clearing snow and ice to enhance highway safety, maintaining access for first responders and, in smaller storms, allowing businesses to remain open so the public can get the goods and services they need. We are seeking hard-working, dedicated professionals to join our team who take pride in what they do and positively impact the traveling public."

There are opportunities for benefits as well.

And when winter is over, employees have the opportunity to move up the career ladder.

The DOT is looking to fill these posititions before the first snowfall.

Applications are now being accepted for the trainee positions. You must be at least 18-years-old to apply. Candidates must also pass a physical and drug test, have a valid, clean Class A or B commercial driver license, and be certified to operate DOT heavy dump trucks.