NewsLocal News


Shortage of plow drivers in SE Wisconsin likely to impact road conditions this weekend

Posted at 5:35 PM, Dec 31, 2021
and last updated 2022-01-01 10:52:55-05

MILWAUKEE — Earlier this year Milwaukee announced increased wages for plow drivers as the city struggles to find enough workers for the winter. With the first big snow storm of the winter coming this weekend that shortage is likely to cause some issues on the road, especially on smaller, residential streets.

In an email, Alderman Bob Bauman told TMJ4 News that in addition to vacancies, 10-15% of drivers are out sick, some are COVID related. Bauman wrote he's "fearing the worst, hoping for the best."

Private plow companies are also up against some the same challenges.

Paul Terry Services in Waukesha said its struggled to find enough people to work this winter. And without enough crews, he's already let his customers know it may take a bit longer than normal to clear the snow.

But on top of a worker shortage, owner Paul Terry is also facing supply chain issues.

"I ordered a plow in the first part of November, and it's still not here," Terry said.

In the past, he said getting a new plow usually only took a few days and the plows were usually in stock locally.

Both the worker shortage and supply chain issues are impacting his ability to take on additional clients this year.

"You have it in your mind, you project that you want to have so many accounts and bring in so much income... but it's a rough world out there and I haven't experienced it in my lifetime," Terry said.

Regardless, he said he'll to his best to find creative solutions to make sure he's able to service his customers as soon as possible.

Report a typo or error // Submit a news tip