Meet Carol Amadon from Farley & Son, Inc.
Carol Amadon is a foreman at Farley & Son, Inc. and has been with the company for 16 years. Some of you may already know her from her other profession within the company, which is a certified pool and hot tub operator. In the winter many of you see her, but many don't realize that it's usually Carol behind the wheel of a Farley & Son truck plowing the highway on Routes 1, 90 and 17 in Rockport!
How long have you been plowing for Farley & Son?
I started off shoveling snow about 13 years ago, and then moved on to plowing a few years after. I have been doing the highway plowing for Farleys since we received the contract about 7 years ago.
Did you ever think you would find yourself responsible for performing snow removal services on such important travel routes?
Absolutely not, but I love doing it!
What's it like to command the attention of other drivers as they see you coming their way?
I think commuters and I both respect each other and we both look out for each other. I think some drivers expect me to stay off the centerline, but it is our right and responsibility to cleanup all areas of the road, including the centerline.
What do you find different about plowing residential and commercial driveways verses doing the highway?
By being on the road all the time there is a feeling of a lot more responsibility. Also, trying to keep the roads clean all the time knowing so many people use these roads to commute.
How do you prepare for a storm?
Before a storm I make sure all the plow gear is on and everything is functioning correctly from the flashing lights, to the plow, down to the mechanical parts in the sander.
When I'm home, I always watch the latest weather forecast and sleep with one eye open! I always have a good idea when I might be called out for duty.
You have been diagnosed with MS. What kind of stamina do you and the job require?
The job itself requires a lot of mental stamina and it's always good to have plenty of rest before and after a storm. Even though I spend a lot of time in the truck, I think the job keeps me going and helps slow down the progress of my MS.
How important is making sure your deicing equipment is properly calibrated and how often does it need to be done?
At the beginning of the season we do thorough testing and calibration of the equipment and then check it on a regular basis. It's very import to have calibrated equipment so we aren't wasting the product we put down and that we use the correct amount of product for the conditions we are dealing with.
What is your favorite part of doing snow removal?
The satisfaction of knowing the roads are safe.
What's your least favorite thing about doing snow removal?
Ice! When conditions change over to ice and thinking I need be at all places at once and it can't happen!
Do you have a memorable or intriguing experience that happened while servicing the roads during a storm?
Getting praise from drivers that know I service the roads!
Are drivers relatively patient when they are behind you considering the low speeds you have to travel at?
For the most part yes, but evey once and a while there is one that doesn't want to wait and will pass me. A number of times I have seen a person that has passed me about a mile down the road and off the shoulder because of the speeds they chose to travel at and not use proper caution.
What do you think provides you with continued success at your job?
The equipment we have and the mechanics we have on staff that can come to my rescue in a moment's notice.
What are some tips you would pass onto drivers that might meet you on the road while you are plowing and deicing?
I would say to slow down and drive for the conditions they are facing.