Crews, residents getting ready for Winter Storm Ariana - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Crews, residents getting ready for Winter Storm Ariana

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There are snow covered roads in downtown Torrington and plows are out. There are snow covered roads in downtown Torrington and plows are out.
Wet snow falling in downtown Torrington Wet snow falling in downtown Torrington

Long before the flakes started flying, people in the northwest hills started getting set for the first major snowstorm of the season.

A number of schools in Litchfield County canceled classes on Tuesday.

Places that sell and service snowblowers told Eyewitness News the phone has been ringing off the hook, and plow drivers are getting prepped for a busy day.

The plow truck outside George's Restaurant in Torrington on Wednesday morning was filled with sand, fueled up, and ready to go. Inside, its driver fueled himself up with a hot breakfast for what's sure to be a long, cold night.

"I just went and loaded with sand, got the snowblower ready, the quads ready to go, the trailer,” a plow truck driver, who wished not to be identified, said. “We're just waiting basically now."

As Winter Storm Ariana makes her way up the coast and into Connecticut just in time for Thanksgiving, holiday travelers might be a little hesitant to hit the roads. However, in Torrington, plow drivers know white on the ground can mean green in their pockets.

"[The] scramble to prepare for the storm,” Peter Ledda, of Torrington, said. “Not anxious to use my liability policy so you have to have all the bases covered, make sure all the equipment is prepared."

Ledda stopped by Ruwet-Sibley, an equipment rental store, on Wednesday morning. He told Eyewitness News that he had some “last minute things” to finish including checking some fluids and moving some machines before getting “all the guys ready."

Ledda wasn't alone. From snowblowers in the front of the showroom, to the contractors stopping by, they told Eyewitness News they've been swamped this week.

"It's been nuts here. Everybody is getting ready,” Tim Ruwet, who is the owner of Ruwet-Sibley said. “Putting plows on machines, plows on trucks, sanders, just basically getting everything ready to go for the storm."

Ruwet told Eyewitness News they planned to put in a full day at the shop, but said they'll keep an eye on the forecast, especially if it starts getting bad early.

As for Ledda and his crew of six, they'll be out plowing and clearing in downtown Torrington late into the night and early Thanksgiving morning.

"Everybody have a nice holiday and stay off the roads,” Ledda said.

Ledda said if the Torrington area gets as much as is forecasted and it stops around midnight or so, he and his crews will probably be out until about noon on Thanksgiving cleaning up.

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