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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Those wishing for a white Christmas in Pittsburgh, got their wish, as snow began falling overnight.
The white blanket covered homes and lawn and roads, which meant Christmas was another work day for the City of Pittsburgh’s Public Works crews.
“Crews were out late last evening and all through the night and they’ll continue being out the rest of the day and overnight to make sure the roads are safe and passable,” said Guy Costa, the Chief Operations Officer for the City of Pittsburgh.
On Itin St. in the city’s Spring Hill neighborhood, a Port Authorit bus slid into a pole.
At the public works station in Homewood, salt trucks were filled with rock salt, topped off with liquid calcium.
“The rock salt becomes less effective when it’s less than 17 degrees,” explained Costa, “so the crews you saw earlier are using liquid calcium to enhance the salt to melt the snow and ice quicker.”
The public works crews have cleared most of the primary streets.
They will work through the evening on the secondary and tertiary streets.
Costa said the wind is a factor. On some streets that have already been cleared, the wind blows the snow back onto them and they have to be cleared again.
“We’re seeing a lot of wind blow from the grass onto the roadway and cars come by and it melts it and freezes over and causes some icing conditions,” Costa told KDKA’s Lisa Washington.
It’s not just the rock salt that helps clear the roads, traffic helps too.
“It helps melt the snow. It gets the rock salt into the snow, into the ice,” Costa said. “The heat from the vehicles helps melt the snow and the sunshine helps.”
While public works crews were out clearing the streets, some people chose to stay off the roads and play in the snow. Schenley Park was an ideal location for sledding, for people to enjoy the beauty of a white Christmas, while it lasts.