Investigation: There Was No DSNY Slowdown

A report by the Department of Investigation found no evidence that DSNY workers purposely tarried during their cleanup of Boxing Day Blizzard snowfall.

A report by the Department of Investigation found no evidence of a slowdown during the December blizzard that brought life in the outer-boroughs .

An unusually  after the initial 30-inch snowfall left some streets in the outer-boroughs impassible for days.

After a rumor had circulated among some city workers that the cleanup had been prolonged by Department of Sanitation workers on purpose, Council Member Dan Halloran, R-Bayside, went public with allegations that  workers came to him, professing that they were told to be  in their efforts.

The motivation, Halloran alleged, was the slated demotion of 100 DSNY supervisors—of which only 50 were ultimately demoted.

"Obviously, some of the information the sources told Halloran wasn’t what they told the DOI," said Halloran spokesman Steven Stites.

A DOI review of video footage from around the city found that approximately 30 of the city’s 265 plows were observed with blades in upright position, eight of them found to be because of “minimal” snowfall.

In Northeast Queens, many people reported seeing snowplows travel with their blades upwards, while roads remained covered and impassible to emergency vehicles. Community Board 11 Chair Jerry Iannece was one of them.

"While we are happy that there was no wrong doing, it still doesn't take away from the fact that the Department of Sanitation did a terrible job,” said Iannece, who does believe the DOIs findings. 

“The report highlights some serious deficiencies, mismanagement, and employee misconduct, such as drinking on the job," said Halloran, referring to an incident in Brooklyn. "The fact that it doesn’t come to any definite conclusion that rises to the level of a concerted action is a reflection of the DOI’s imperfect data."

"As the report states, the DOI was unable to track employees and get the quality of testimony it would like to have," Halloran added.  

He also said that his constituents look to him to shed light on problems and he is "going to do that even when it makes the powers that be uncomfortable."

leslie June 05, 2011 at 01:01 PM
What a joke! They should all be fired - there are plenty of people out of work that would love their job.
Linda June 06, 2011 at 01:55 PM
My husband is one of the many sanitation workers who worked overtime for ten days straight on snow removal. These workers are not machines -- they can't go forever without eating or sleeping. If your street wasn't plowed it was because there was bus or vehicle blocking the road. If you saw a plow raised it was because there was some obstruction on the pavement (like a metal plate). New Yorkers are so unbelievably spoiled -- God help us if we ever had the devastation of the Missouri tornadoes or tsunamis or earthquakes. Oh, and by the way. You enter civil service by taking a test which is open to anyone.
Margaret June 07, 2011 at 02:30 AM
You're so right Linda...my son worked over 2 weeks straight without a day off..12 hour night shifts..couldn't see the road in front of him it was snowing so hard...buses & cars deserted in the middle of the street by ignorant people who couldn't figure out that they wouldn't make it down the block...when he stopped for a lunch break, some ignoromous took their picture in an attempt to report him and his partner...You're also right, these people would fall apart in a flood..I wonder if they even have jobs, and if so are they even a fraction as dedicated as our DSNY workers? I doubt it.


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