ARMONK, N.Y. Aside from minor issues, most North Castle residents are no longer feeling the effect of Tropical Storm Irene, but this isnt the case for the town highway department.
Since the storm, the highway department has had three crews working almost every day to try to clean-up what Irene left behind, and 23-year employee Mike Giaccio knows theres still a long way to go.
I wouldnt say were halfway there, theres a lot of damage, Giaccio said. The problem is the truck fills up quick so we have to go dump it, then we come back and start all over. I dont know when well be done. A lot depends on the weather; you get a couple of rainy days, you cant chip in the rain.
Town officials, Giaccio said, lifted the towns usual policy that does not allow branches larger than brush size to be piled up for the towns disposal. He said the highway department has had to haul away nearly every branch that fell during the storm.
You could get to a house and spend two hours working there, Giaccio said. Weve had worse storms but this one was pretty bad.
Due to the hard work of the highway department, Giaccio said North Castles roads that were blocked by downed trees were all passable a couple days after the storm.
We had some roads that were only one lane but they were still all passable by the Tuesday after it hit, Giaccio said. Thats pretty good, to get hit with a storm like that and be able to do that.
In the days following the storm, the highway department had to deal with flooding and downed trees and wires.
People have to remember, Con Ed cant do their job until the wires are cleared and we cant clear the wires until Con Ed says the wires are dead, Giaccio said. Once the wires are confirmed dead then well clear the wires and then they [Con Ed] can do their job to get everything back up.
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