A History of Winter and Snow Removal in Newark

Snow Removal in Newark

Snow removal in Newark, New Jersey, has a rich and challenging history that dates back over a century. The city’s location in the northeastern United States makes it susceptible to heavy snowfall during the winter months, creating a constant need for efficient snow removal services. In this article, we will explore the evolution of snow removal in Newark, from its early days to the modern methods and technologies employed to combat winter’s wrath.

The residents of Newark have been dealing with winter weather for over 350 years.  They have walked through some of the harshest winters in the Eastern US, and they have faced it with perseverance, ingenuity, and style!

Newark’s Winter Memories

snow removal newark

The first written accounts of Newark’s wintery history appeared in 1779. That was the winter that plagued George Washington and his army fell over Eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.  Incredibly cold temperatures froze over both freshwater and saltwater streams, rivers, bays, and harbors.  The year 1780 began with a snowstorm dumping over four feet of snow.

The February 1845 snowstorm was accompanied by a common winter danger, fire.  The west side of Broad Street across from Trinity Church was mostly destroyed.  The community pitched in by helping dig trenches from the engine houses so firemen could get their equipment to the blaze.  Captain Plume, the owner of a local hardware store, lent out shovels and other equipment in a successful effort to spare the great church nearby, which was threatened by the fire.

Early Methods of Snow Removal

Before the advent of modern snow removal equipment, dealing with snow in Newark was a strenuous and labor-intensive task. Residents and business owners primarily relied on manual labor and horse-drawn plows. Streets and sidewalks were cleared by hand, making it a slow and challenging process.

By the late 19th century, the introduction of horse-drawn snowplows marked a significant improvement. These plows allowed for more efficient snow removal, although the process was still dependent on animal power. Workers, often city employees, were responsible for clearing paths, but the process was far from perfect.

The Rise of the Snow Shovel

In the early 20th century, the snow shovel became an indispensable tool for Newark’s residents and businesses. Shoveling snow was a community effort, with neighbors often coming together to clear sidewalks and streets after a snowstorm. This communal approach to snow removal continued well into the mid-20th century.

The snow shovel, while manual, was an essential tool for ensuring mobility during winter. It allowed residents to maintain access to their homes and businesses and helped keep the city functional during snow events. However, it was still a physically demanding and time-consuming process.

Modernization of Snow Removal

The mid-20th century brought about significant changes in snow removal techniques in Newark. The city began investing in snowplows and salt-spreading equipment, marking the transition from manual labor to mechanized solutions. Snowplows with powerful engines and adjustable blades made it possible to clear roads more efficiently.

The use of salt and sand as de-icing agents also became a common practice during this time. These materials helped to prevent ice from forming on the roads, improving safety for both drivers and pedestrians.

Challenges Faced by Newark

While modernization improved the efficiency of snow removal in Newark, it also brought new challenges. As the city grew and the number of vehicles increased, maintaining clear roads became more difficult. Traffic congestion during snowstorms and the need for timely snow removal became pressing issues.

Additionally, the environmental impact of salt usage became a concern. Salt can harm vegetation and contaminate groundwater, prompting the city to explore more eco-friendly de-icing alternatives.

Technological Advancements

In recent decades, Brancato Snow Removal has continued to adapt and innovate its snow removal methods. Technological advancements have played a significant role in making the process more efficient and environmentally friendly.

Among those advances is the use of GPS technology in snowplows. This allows for real-time monitoring of their routes. This ensures that roads are cleared systematically and that no area is missed. It also assists us in the event of an emergency.

We adopted the use of snow-melting machines years ago as an efficient and cost-effective method of dealing with large amounts of snow. Snow melting machines can melt large amounts of snow, reducing the need for snow storage areas and minimizing the environmental impact. Additionally, it reduces the amount of heavy equipment traffic on roads and parking lots. This prevents the damage that large hauling trucks can cause to pavement.

Brancato Snow Melting Services in Action

Another technological improvement is improved salt management. We have put in much research to find better formulations for our ice management systems. The right combinations of brine and chemicals can cut costs and reduce the environmental impact.

Challenges Posed by Climate Change

In recent years, the impact of climate change has presented new challenges to snow removal efforts in Newark. Warmer temperatures have led to more unpredictable snowfall patterns, making it difficult for the city to anticipate and respond to snow events. Extreme weather events, including heavy snow and ice storms, have also become more frequent.

This changing climate has forced Brancato to adopt a more flexible and adaptive approach to snow removal, with the ability to respond to unexpected events becoming increasingly important.

Resilience and Adaptability

The history of snow removal in Newark, NJ, is a testament to the city’s resilience and ability to adapt to changing circumstances. From the days of manual labor and horse-drawn plows to the modern era of technology-driven snow removal, Newark has evolved to meet the challenges posed by harsh winters.

That is why Brancato is so connected to Newark and its people. We have learned important lessons over the years about how to adapt quickly to changing situations. We have decades of experience in handling snow removal, equipment needs, and material management. Put the snow management needs of your business in our hands. Our experienced and capable crew will make sure you are back up and running quickly. Our teams are local and know the lay of the land, but they are backed by the resources of a national company.

Brancato Snow & Ice Management - Some Equipment

Choose Brancato Today

Call or come by today. Our knowledgeable sales staff will help you determine your needs and get you a free quote. Don’t leave your business’s future to chance. The next big snowstorm could cost more than realize.