Trucks are synonymous with hauling, and in New York City, they’re also being used to keep people safe.
New York City Sanitation Department Commissioner Kathryn Garcia told reporters recently that the department’s snow fleet is used to protect visiting VIPs, such as the U.S. president and the pope.
“The other mission that snow equipment currently has is that we’re a big security force,” Garcia said.
To help with security during President Obama’s recent visit to the city, snow plow trucks were placed at strategic locations to block traffic and keep the president safe while he toured Manhattan.
“I had 60 spreaders out in the streets of Manhattan. Of course he did bounce around—lower Manhattan, Upper Manhattan…he’s going to the Daily Show, he’s going to the theater, he’s going here and there, so I’m blocking all the roads,” Garcia said.
So, how about when the Pope comes to town?
“When the Pope was in town, it was almost like my entire snow fleet was on the streets of New York, blocking all of the route to keep him protected,” she said.
Of course, using the snow fleet to block traffic gets New Yorkers curious about what’s going on.
“I do get Tweets, ‘Why are there orange vehicles all on First Avenue?’ But that’s why they’re out there. They act as moveable security barriers. We respond to whatever PD requests.”