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"yeah i know how to plow"

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by 04superduty, Sep 14, 2007.

  1. 04superduty

    04superduty PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,354

    well i want to hear some stories since winter will be here soon and i guess i will get it started.
    2 winters ago i was plowing a PITA lot, one that they put waay to many islands all in the way. the lot would take 3-4 hrs on around 4" of snow. http://www.plowsite.com/showthread.php?t=32113 hear is what to lot looks like. I am about half way done when my boss calls and wants me to go get a business complex done before they open. my boss is not doing good at all, he is real sick and going out both ends but one of the new shovelers says he knows how to plow and will drop the boss off at home and finish the lot with his truck.
    so i take off and get the complex done then head back to check how the new guy is doing. :dizzy: :dizzy: thats about what i do. he only had 2 more rows left to do but only did 2 passes each, he never cleared any of the parking spaces out. there were windrows somehow into areas that already had been plowed and shouldnt have even been touched. mind you people are already starting to show up for work now, so i need to clean up the rest of the lot and now deal with cars.
    has anyone else been told, "yeah i know how to plow" and then proven they have no clue on what they are doing? lets hear some good stories. :D
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2007
  2. Wicked500R

    Wicked500R Senior Member
    Messages: 394

    Quite a few times and it really stinks having to clean up another's mess last minute. I've seen some sloppy jobs. Not cleaning up the runoff from the 1st passes, not cleaning parking spaces, not packing corners, and the worst is being like 3' from the curb....I am a neat freak when it comes to plowing snow and it really buggs me some of the stuff I see that goes on!
  3. mcwlandscaping

    mcwlandscaping 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,557

    Year before last, at my dads office building. He plows with the company GMC sierra, just that parking lot and the bosses driveway for overtime $$$. Well, one of the other guys really needed some overtime (he's been put through a lot the last few years), so my dad said that was fine. Well, day after the next storm, dad and i show up to check it out, make sure everything was back where it was suppose to be, and come to find out, he didn't stack ANY of the snow!!!!!! There is VERY limited space to push snow and if it's not pushed back and stacked, then you loose spots. Well, every row, he pushed right up to his last push and left it.......what made it worse was that it was heavy wet snow, then it got VERY cold, so it wasn't going anywhere. He hasn't plowed since!! lol
  4. Philbilly2

    Philbilly2 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,126

    I had a kid plowing with me that had "plowed before". I left him alone in th front lot of a building, I went back to do the loading docks. He took the snow from the outside od the lot and pushed it towards the building. To make it one better, he had such a big winrow that he could not push it with his truck. We ended up spending the better part of that afternoon, going sideways through his winrow and shoving it back to the curb on the outside of the lot.
  5. Mick

    Mick PlowSite.com Veteran
    from Maine
    Messages: 5,546

    Not really a guy who told me he knew how to plow, but:

    I went to meet with a customer about doing his driveway. Now, short driveways certainly aren't "rocket science". He told me he'd had his last guy for several years and, come to find out, this customer simply didn't know to expect better. But the plow guy had angled the plow TOWARD the garage, so snow was piled against the side wall. Since the doors were facing the driveway, he's simply take a run in with the plow straight and turn just before the garage with the result being trailoff against the doors. He apparently didn't know anything about backplowing so the customer would use his snow blower to move the pile left in front of the doors.

    I showed him how I'd come in and plow up against the wall with the plow angled away from the wall - there'd be no snow against the garage wall. There was plenty of room to make couple more runs on that side ending with the snow pushed over a bank. Then use the cleared off area to plow in front of the garage and the truck never runs over an unplowed area. Then backblade the small area right in front of the doors and push it off. He could give the snowblower a rest.

    He was absolutely AMAZED and I was shaking my head thinking his last plow guy ought to find something else to do. I plowed for him for a couple of years until I tightened the route. He told me if I ever decided to come back in that neighborhood to let him know.
  6. jcesar

    jcesar Senior Member
    from Mi
    Messages: 492

    before I went out on my own, i worked for a Construction company. We plowed in the winter for more work. We had a commercial account for a body shop. The loading dock for the building went from the parking lot, downward, to the door. Pretty good grade.
    It was rather simple to backblade, although it was uphill. I never had a problem with it.
    Well, he had hired a guy, that supposedly knew how to plow. He sent this guy to plow the lot, and when the body shop opened for business, they were pissed!!!!

    He had taken all the snow from the lot, and piled it into this dock area. It took me 3 hours with a skidsteer to dig it out!!!

    What a joke!
  7. JD Dave

    JD Dave PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,032

    A large mall we bid and didn't get gave me call back in 1999. He just said he had a problem and wanted me to help him out. Well when I got there the guy had windrowed all the snow into the alley ways between the parking spots, it was a complete traffic jam as this was 10 am buy now. They had also pushed snow under so many trailers that it wasn't even funny.
  8. T-MAN

    T-MAN PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,363

    It never seizes to amaze me how many "plow jockeys" dont have a clue how to plow. The basics to me are allways clear around the building first, dont stack snow on hydrants blah blah blah. I see guys pull into lots and plow the "easy" stuff first, then start working around buildings, pushing snow across allready plowed areas etc. Then you see them over here, then around back, then in a different spot lol, making a mess and taking way to much time. Its amazing how much time you can save just having a good plan of attack.
    I subed for a couple years for a really large company here that used hundreds of subs. 75% of there guys were horrible.
  9. dakotasrock

    dakotasrock Senior Member
    from MN
    Messages: 260

    allot of the guys just show up and plow.
    U've gotta take a min and plan out ur attack based on the logistics of the lot... any cars still there, existing piles, amount of snow etc. Now, u are pretty tired and arnt thinking clearly, but thats what seperates the good guys from the slackers.
  10. MickiRig1

    MickiRig1 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,617

    Most people with experience should know that every event has different snow. Dry and light is going to move much better then wet and heavy.You can window light stuff real well. Heavy wet snow laughs at your efforts. You have to have a plan, know where it goes and be able to change with the conditions and amounts fallen.
    I plowed a 12 " + event at a local plaza that has about 300 x 200 foot of parking. It has 2 lanes around it and 4 lanes to the sides. We plow just 2/3's of the 200 depth in the front.
    I show up in mid plow.
    The bright one before me has wings on his plow. He started windowing the snow toward the street. Soon it too high and heavy to move it. So what's he do?
    He starts at the street side and works back toward the stores and his first windows.
    Then once again the snow's to heavy and high to move. He now has a 3-1/2 high pile 10 foot wide across the WHOLE 300 feet PARKING LOT. Another job for a loader,too bad we don't have one! I had to straight blade the snow pile toward the street end then window the rest to cleanup.
  11. GL&M

    GL&M Senior Member
    from PA
    Messages: 223

    Every spring I do lawn repair work for a bank that has a guy that thinks he knows how to plow. Every storm he push directly into the turf. As soon as the plow drops off the asphalt in digs into the grass. There is a better way to plow it, but he didn't figure it out yet. He makes an extra 400.00 bucks for me every year.
  12. Peterbilt

    Peterbilt Senior Member
    from IA.
    Messages: 745

    I like to keep my snow windrowed usually to the center of a lot, then push it up to a central pile. It helps me keep a small lot from being to overwhelmed by snow piles all over the place. I have guys that just can't figure out this program. They always keep rolling their windrow over and over and spreading out thier piles and packing it against every curb in a parkig lot.

    Drives me freaking crazy. Plus on the wet snows followed by a nice temp drop the packed snow becomes packed ice and I have to drag a loader across town to clean up something that should have been done right the first time.

    Sucks being the boss.
  13. itsgottobegreen

    itsgottobegreen PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,351

    This is why we have gone to a fleet of protechs on skid steers, backhoes and loaders. Its so much easier to train guys with these.

    I have one guy who can't plow to save his life. After 5 of our best guys tried to explain it to him. He still didn't get it. So out the door he went. Another buddy of mine took him on. After the first storm he yanked him out and put this guys 16 year old brother in the truck. This kid had never plowed or driven stick before. But after an hour was getting more done. Also I need to mention he as a dually with a 7.5 meyer with really badly bent up prowings.
  14. Crash935

    Crash935 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,377

    Back in the early 90's I put a buddy in my old truck (82 GMC 1ton Dually) to help out one night. He had done some smaller stuff for me in the past so i thought we would be good. He shows up to help on a large Comm acct where i had a pile going that needed to be moved down a wide alley. Told him to just take parts of the pile and he says "ok". I happened to look over just as hes making his first cut. He hit the pile dead center with some good speed, took the top of the pile clean off and had that ole truck air born for atleast 30 feet. He looks over at me and asks "hows that", it took me a few minutes to answer him, i was trying to decide if i should laugh or cry. Checked the truck out (this thing was a tank) and explained how to take a little at a time. We still sit and laugh about it every once in a while.
  15. crazymike

    crazymike Senior Member
    from Toronto
    Messages: 639

    we hired an old man the stacked snow 7' high against 5x glass smoking shelters at an industrial complex.

    Had it been me, the glass would have shattered when I drove by 10' away. He managed to push every little bit of snow against them (which if it wern't bad enough, they were attached to the building so he was pushing the snow the wrong way anyways)
  16. Bossman 92

    Bossman 92 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,768

    I let my dad plow a few years, during a sunday storm when my customers were closed, He had never plowed before, but did better than any first timmers I have ever seen.

    Last year, (my new guy), I needed him to plow a larger comm building during a big storm, well after about 2 hours I show up and he has rows of snow everywhere. He put the edge of the plow up to the last windrow and ran with it, leaving several inches squirting out the top. The manager (my buddy) asks if I was going to leave it like that or what. :dizzy:

    O yea, I worked for a guy years ago, that didn't hook his plow on right and it fell off in the middle of a parking lot. :rolleyes:

    Thats why I try to plow everything myself
  17. dlcequip

    dlcequip Member
    from ohio
    Messages: 59

    Two years ago i hired a guy to come plow for me. 30 mins later i came around the corner and he had managed to back into a picnic table. He pushed it up on to a island with a tree in it and almost split the table in half. His excuse was that he just put a salt spreader on and wasn't use to it. Not a good excuse he pushed it ten feet before it hit the tree. Then he proceeded to tell me how he thought he could weld it back together. I'd like to meet a guy who can weld plastic and pop metal. I found out the hard way how hard it is to find a picnic table in the middle of winter in ohio,and the idiot that hit it lets just say he doesn't plow for me any more and didn't make any money that winter.:drinkup:
  18. unimogr

    unimogr Senior Member
    Messages: 234

    Yup, been there. I do a mill complex minus one account. I get in before everyone opens and get finished. Later the other lot plow guy takes his snow outside his fenced area and piles it in the street, inside "L" corner on top of a hydrant and so trailers can't make the turn. (private road)

    So I get called back cause trailers can't make it to the dock at my account. My customer says move the snow. So I give it back to where it came from, on top of the mail boxes and half of their entrance then go sit, have a coffee with the neighbors and wait for the show to start.

    It did, other guy fired, I got the account.

    (I really hate guys that bury hydrants, dumbest thing I see out there.)
  19. Mark13

    Mark13 PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 5,719

    Does letting my younger sister loose on the atv with the blade count? She tried to plow our whole driveway with out angling the blade. She ended up with some snow piled against the front steps, garage door, and a little bit in the middle of the turn around.
  20. MickiRig1

    MickiRig1 PlowSite Veteran
    Messages: 3,617

    Give sister some time she might get good at plowing. My wife wanted to learn how, She had me going. Then she snapped me off and said She was just kidding!
    One can only hope sometimes!