NEW HARTFORD- With temperatures in the high 90’s, most people throughout the region tried to beat the heat; for some though, they simply could not as their jobs forced them out.
“Our guys are out here working hard,” said Jim Piccola, Department of Transportation (DOT) Regional Engineer. “So it is very important to make sure you stay hydrated and they are taking breaks throughout the day.”
On Tuesday DOT was working on several projects around the area. Of the projects, patching and paving roadways were by far the hottest of them all.
“The air temperature is one thing, but when you are here on the pavement the temperature is five, ten, fifteen degrees hotter than the air,” said Piccola.
Throughout the day DOT crews looked out for one another in the extreme heat conditions. Foreman at several different sites had all their trucks running with their air conditioning on full blast.
“You know our guys are aware of the heat and make sure our guys stay cool and hydrated,” said Piccola.
DOT crews were not the only workers out paving In Tuesday’s heat. Richards Paving Co. which has been in the Utica area for over 60 years, was out in full force.
“It’s just something that we are used to,” said Richard Dow, Owner of Richards Paving Co.
Dow’s crew of five hard workers had their work cut out for them with a 2,600-square foot driveway.
“[The heat] is better ya know,” said Dow. “The job comes out better it really does I like the hot.”
The blacktop which Dow and his men were laying, was roughly 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
“You know when it gets here it is hot enough to burn you,” said Dow.
Dow’s son Richard Dow IV who has been in the family business for over six years, says the worst part about the heat is operating the paver.
“With the heat from the paver, the blacktop, and the torches it’s probably 130 degrees when standing on [the paver],” said Dow. “I help him out and get on there too.”
As always it is important to stay hydrated in hot conditions.