VIDEO: PIT Crews Clear Runways During Recent Snowstorm

Airport’s 24/7 snow removal operations among best in business

By Julie Bercik

Published January 22, 2024

Read Time: < 1 min


When snow started falling hours before dawn on Friday, PIT’s snow removal team was already on the move, making runs up and down the runways with heavy machines adorned with plows, brushes and more so planes could safely take off and land.

Mike Shirk, who led the “conga line” of 14 vehicles, was in constant communication with every other driver. Airport Operations is also part of snow events and on the airfield with the snow crews at all times, reporting field conditions and running friction tests, all while staying in contact with the tower.

When crews are clearing a runway, that single runway is closed. In storms like this, the goal is to keep two or three runways of PIT’s four runways open. The team at Allegheny County Airport also stayed busy during the snowfall, clearing the airfield and keeping it safe.

Daylight offers a completely different view of the airfield — the bright white snow matches the sky and the yellow snow removal vehicles really stand out. But shifting from night to day doesn’t change much because the work remains the same: keeping the taxiways and runways clear of snow and open for arrivals and departures.

Winter operations at PIT and AGC are a massive team effort, from operations to field maintenance and mechanics. Each plays an important role in keeping the airfield safe and open.


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