Airport Business

APR 2018

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SNOW REMOVAL "Amarillo has a lot of high winds and we're looking at different styles and to design some building efficiencies in terms of how we roof the building and all of the expenditures that we were spending in terms of electrical and other utilities to heat the building in winter and cool it in summer," Hurst said. Hurst said the airport discovered it also needs a bigger footprint inside the building to store equipment and cost effective ways to accomplish the goal. He said they're designing a lean-to type structure to provide more covered parking spaces directly outside of the facility, which would increase capacity. Hurst said prior coordination with your local FAA program manager to communicate your needs of the facility upfront is very helpful when starting to upgrade snow removal facilities. He said it's also imperative to get staff involved with upgrading snow removal facilities and equipment to find out their needs from an operator standpoint. "A lot of times I think everyone is just concerned primarily about the regulatory standpoint and that's important for compliance, but at the end of the day, if you have the equipment and resources needed for the staff to accurately complete their job, I think that's one of the most satisfying things that I can see," Hurst said. "Essentially, they're the ones doing the work, so they're the ones that matter." AN EYE ON ALL SEASONS Patricia Lardie, strategic government accounts manager for Case IH, said more airports are asking for versatility when it comes to snow removal equipment. The Spokane International Airport (SIA) in April took delivery of a Case Steiger Quad/Grouser blade system, which utilizes a 30-foot ramp blade to clear snow from paved and grassy areas without creating divots interfering with the ILS. The unit also includes a three-point hitch/drawbar to allow it to pull a tillage unit to incorporate recycled deicing fluid in the spring. The unit allows the airport to attach up to 40' rotary cutters and finishing mowers to the back in summer months to perform maintenance of grass areas, which Lardie said allows the airport to eliminate up to one day and one tractor and driver per mowing cycle during the mowing season. "With the tracks, they will be able to mow earlier than they could with wheeled tractors," she said. "And with it having tracks it doesn't create the ruts out in the rough areas. It can go into fairly wet areas with high flotation." Lardie said Portsmouth International Airport at Pease (PSM) was the first airport to inquire about using the Quad tractor while at ConExpo and later purchased. Massport has also added the equipment to its ranks. "The interest that was first shown in the unit is it's a very large tractor and it can handle a very large blade," she said. "The big interest to the Pease folks was the low-ground PSI." SGS MAKES A MOVE TO THE FUTURE At South St. Paul Municipal Airport (SGS) in South St. Paul, Minnesota, the airport recently used a $219,267 FAA grant to purchase new snow removal equipment. Joseph Carney, interim airport manager for SGS, said snow removal tactics have been standard for quite a few years. Staff uses the loader for the majority of heavy snow moving on the runway, all the taxiways and the ramp. They then use a Ford F-550 with a plow on all of the taxi lanes and around the hangars. They windrow all the snow in the middle of the taxiways, then a loader comes back with a 16-foot pusher box and clean the windrow up to the end of the taxi lanes to pile all the snow on the grass at the end. Carney said after the plow goes through on the runway, staff goes through with a John Deere 6115M Tractor with a 12 foot wide sweepster broom attached and sweep the entire runway. "We'll sweep it so 90 percent of the snow is off. Anything left is just particles that have blown from the sweeper," he said. "All the heavy chunks of snow are gone. What we're trying to do is get down to the tarmac so within a day the runway is clean a dry." "With three people it would take us about two days to get a good snowfall taken care of," he continued. "With two of us, it takes us about four days to get everything done and cleaned to our satisfaction." During the Super Bowl celebrations in Minneapolis, Carney said they had planes come in right after snow ended the Saturday before the game. Within an hour after the snow ended, staff had the runway and one taxiway cleared and swept so the aircraft could get access to the ramp. "We can get stuff done so we can move aircraft within two to three hours at the end of snowfall, Carney said. The FAA grant was put to a new Caterpillar Planned upgrades to the snow removal equipment facility at Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport include the renovation of the mechanical systems i.e. doors and exhaust fans, repairing roof leaks, lighting, and the addition of a lean-to structure for increased equipment storage. Rick Husband Amarillo International Airport VIDEO: MSP SNOW REMOVAL: JOIN THE CONGA LINE Minneapolis St. Paul International Airport created a video showing a behind the scenes look at how crews work to remove snow from the airfield. www.AviationPros.com/12401829 April 2018 airportbusiness 31

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