SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The city of Sioux Falls has spent nearly half of winter cleaning up after a single storm.

Six weeks after Sioux Falls received more than 14 inches of snow, city crews have yet to haul their final load of snow.

“We’re still working on picking up snow, cleaning storm inlets out, doing some plow backs,” Street Operations Manager Dustin Hansen said.

And the overall numbers are staggering.

“We’ve hauled in about 22,000 loads over this winter, over about a month and a half period,” Hansen said.

“A lot of snow hauled and a lot of time being spent here by all the operators,” Street Maintenance Supervisor Shandy Dvorak said.

Shandy Dvorak is now Street Maintenance Supervisor but was a lead equipment operator when the storm hit.

“You pretty much lived down here, you were down here all the time. You went home, you got some sleep, and then you wake up and come right back here so it was just long and tiring for the guys,” Dvorak said.

12-hour shifts, sometimes seven days a week, week after week.

“In a 12-hour shift you don’t have a lot of downtime if you’re getting your 6-8 hours of rest, so it was a pretty daunting task,” Hansen said.

The storm has also taken its toll on the city’s $10.1-million winter maintenance budget.

“So, year to date, we’re at about $5.1-million out of $10-million budget for the winter season,” Hansen said.

On a positive note, Mother Nature has been assisting with the cleanup in recent weeks.

“Obviously, we’ve had quite a few days of melting, so that’s been good and we can start to see some grass out there, so very fortunate for that. Hopefully we get a few more days of that,” Hansen said.

Hansen says it’s been a stressful winter, but warmer days await.

“We’re still coming to work, we’ve still got smiles on our face, and we’re keeping positive attitudes, we just can’t wait for spring,” Hansen said.

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