Training for your snow and ice fighters is important to keep their skills sharp, remind them of risks, and increase safety for roadway users and themselves.  Training can take many forms and one of those is the use of a snowplow simulator.  In the past, snowplow simulators were only available through traveling vendors and while their service is good, the cost is high and the logistics to access them can be a barrier.  Delaware Technical Community College has provided a high-quality alternative, conveniently located in Middletown, through their Workforce Development and Community Education group.

For years, the Delaware T2/LTAP Center and the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) looked for ways to secure, host, and maintain our own simulators that would provide greater flexibility in the curriculum and the logistics of accessing the training throughout the season instead of in a concentrated one- or two-week schedule, while minimizing cost.  The largest challenges included space, funding, and maintenance personnel.

We almost threw in the towel.  But a chance meeting at a children’s soccer game where two former colleagues were catching up resulted in the connection with Delaware Technical Community College that set things in motion.  In short, Delaware Tech was able to expand their burgeoning Middletown Simulator Center to include two state-of-the-art snowplow simulators.

The three partner groups worked over the next few months to develop a curriculum and approach while Delaware Tech arranged funding to order the equipment.  By late 2019 the new snowplow simulators were in place and pilot testing of different approaches began.  The events of 2020 and 2021 being what they were, they proceeded slowly, but they are fully open for business now and local public agencies should take a look at what they have to offer.

Delaware Tech will provide six (6) hours of snowplow training for (up to) eight (8) participants of the Organization at it’s Middletown Center, located at 500 North Cass Street, Middletown, DE 19709. The date and time for this training will be mutually agreed upon by both Delaware Tech and the Organization.  The structure is as follows.

Classroom Training (3 hours):

  • SMART – Decision Driving Training
    • Scan – Measure Risk – Anticipate Action –Reach a Decision –Trust your Decision
  • Distracted Driving
    • Visual
    • Manual
    • Cognitive
  • Fatigue Management
    • Warning Signs
    • Pull Over
    • Rest Breaks
    • Naps
  • Adverse Conditions
    • Windshield/Windows Clear
    • White Out Conditions
    • Skids
  • Rollover and Safe Operation
    • 6 Wheel Dump Trucks w/Auger
    • 6 & 10 Wheel Dump Trucks w/Hopper
  • Inspections
    • Pre-trip
    • Breaks

Simulator Training (3-hours):

  • Conditions – white outs, day/evening, snow pack, curves, hills and elevations
  • Road Elements & Tactics – intersections, turn lanes, ramps, bus stops, etc.
  • Equipment – basic truck operation, plow operation, spreader operations and controls.
  • Moving Objects – pedestrians, vehicles, animals

Simulator training will consist of various scenarios with differing combinations of road conditions, road types, equipment, and moving objects.

Cost:

Organization will pay Delaware Tech the total sum of $2,380.00 as compensation for all services and deliverables, which is comprised of the following:

Training (6 hour X $95/hour)                                        $  570.00
Additional Instructor (6 hours X $50/hour)                   $  300.00
Simulator Rental (6 hours X 2 sims X $100/hour)        $1,200.00
15% Administration Fee                                               $  310.00

TOTAL                                                                          $2,380.00

                         *$297 per student (in an eight-student cohort)

An agreement will need to be completed and executed between Delaware Tech and the Organization prior to the scheduling of training.

Local agencies can contact Delaware Tech directly through Dr. Paul T. Morris, Jr., Associate Vice President, Delaware Technical Community College, Workforce Development and Community Education, at (302) 266-3404 or pmorris@dtcc.edu.

Go get trained.

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