b'WINTER OPERATIONSYSB 9The philosophy about snow removal equipment at Greaterbut seasoned, staff remove more snow in less time. That, in turn, Sudbury Airport (YSB) can be summed up in three words:allows the airport to allocate its 15 snow removal employees and Larger. Faster. Better. seasonal workers more efficiently.To handle copious amounts of snow with a relatively smallA good example is the airports recent investment in a Metal snow removal staff, the Ontario airport takes a tactical approachPless MaxxPro 20-36 snowplow, which is mounted on an Eagle that emphasizes advanced equipment and machines that boostCLAAS Xerion 5000 tractor. The plow offers operators three productivity and efficiency.configurations: a 20-foot-wide box plow, a 28-foot-wide scoop Its all about increasing efficiencies andplow and a traditional plow that is 36 feet wide with its side wings decreasing the time we have to spend outfully extended.on the runways, especially during flightRocca reports that the productivity gains were immediate. times, says Robert Tyrer, director of AirportPreviously, operators used to push snow to the center of the Operations, Security and Planning. Locatedapron, then scoop it away with wheel loaders. in Northern Ontario, YSB provides criticalWe used to run two different operators on two smaller pieces of connecting service to Toronto, about 240ROBERT TYRER equipment with smaller plows, recalls Tyrer. It took them between miles to the south. three and four hours to clear the apron. But with the 36-foot blade, Were a small regional airport, but ourwe can do the same work with one operator in one hour.goal is to be a center of excellence for snow We recognized the time savings immediately, Rocca adds.removal operations and training, adds Airfield Operations Manager Phil Rocca, noting thatThe MaxxPros flexible blade configurations are key to the YSB handles about 50,000 aircraft/250,000increased productivity, he explains. After using the fully extended passenger movements annually on twoblade to clear a large area, operators can fold in the wide wings runwaysa 6,500-foot-long primary andand push away the snow piles with the same machine. 5,000-foot secondary.PHIL ROCCA Overall, the MaxxPro plow reduced apron-clearing operations Excellence is a must, as Old Man Winter often forces the airportfrom two plows with two operators to one plow and one operator, to punch above its weight when it comes to winter operations.Tyrer reports.Take the winter of 2019-2020, for example, when the area was hitHaving a blade that can change its configuration to plow, with nearly 14 feet of snow.back-drag and windrow both left and right is huge in terms of It was insane, Rocca recalls. productivity, Whittemore emphasizes. The side wings can move 180 degrees overall and also can move independently from each Even typical winters provide plenty of challenges. Situated aboutother, he adds. 40 miles north of Lake Huron, YSB receives an average of 8 feet of snow annually.Tyrer notes that every piece in YSBs fleet is crucial for maintaining flight operations during winter, but the larger plow is a Jason Whittemore, vice president ofgame-changer.Metal Pless, an Ontario-based snowplow manufacturer, notes that YSBs snow removalThe bigger blades increase the efficiency of the operation in prowess has helped it establish a sterlingterms of clearing apron spaces, he says. Those are the key reputation in the Canadian airport community.components of our operation.Sudbury is known to be on the leadingCleaner Passesedge of investing in new technology, saysBoth of the airports MaxxPro units (a 20-36 model and a 12-22) Whittemore.JASON WHITTEMORE have blades that conform to uneven surfaces. Whittemore explains Theyre very forward-thinking, adds Benthat Live Edge technology leaves less snow and ice on surfaces McKeown, commercial business manager atafter plowing because spring-loaded steel cutting edges on the Team Eagle, which distributes Metal Pless andbottom of the plows can float up to 3 inches vertically and 2 inches other brands of snow removal equipment inhorizontally from each other. Less residual snow and ice means North America. They go out and get the bestcrews need to apply up to 50% less melting agents and abrasives equipment available to fulfill their needs. after plowing, he adds. The Canadian airport network relies heavilySudbury was among the first airports in Canada to buy on Sudbury for guidance about winter snowBEN McKEOWN blades with Live Edge, says Whittemore. Before Live Edge operations, he continues. Theyre verytechnology, youd have to plow over and over to remove as much engaged and are leaders in the snow removal community. snow as possible, then do brooming and salting. But this blade is more effective because it follows the contours of the surface Doing More With Less mechanically, so the operator doesnt have to compensate for Several years ago, YSB started investing in larger pieces ofuneven surfaces manually.equipment that do the work of multiple machines to help its small, AirportImprovement.comMarch | April 2022'