Snow & Ice Removal Program
The removal of snow and ice to maintain the airfield pavements in a safe condition for aircraft and passengers is our primary focus during the winter. Due to the amount of “lake effect” snow the airport may receive annually, snow removal operations are a critical part of the airport’s operational and budgetary planning activities. It takes tremendous time & effort of staff resources, equipment and material to keep the airfield pavements in optimal condition and open for aircraft operations during inclement weather.
The airport is comprised of approximately 4.5 million square feet of runways, taxiways, and aprons in addition to airport roads, parking areas, and sidewalks to keep clear of snow and ice. This is equivalent to approximately 72 lane miles (12-foot wide).
Muskegon County Airport has purchased more than $2.3 million in snow removal equipment in the past decade. The majority of this equipment was eligible for and received federal grant funding through the FAA’s Airport Improvement Program.
Airfield ("Airside") Operations
Muskegon's snow removal equipment fleet to remove snow and ice from the runways, taxiways and parking ramps is comprised of the following specialized equipment:
- Two (2) Oshkosh H-Series snow blowers with a combined capacity to move 10,000 tons of snow every hour (5,000 tons/hour each) up to 200 feet from the runways & taxiways.
- One (1) Oshkosh H-Series broom with a 22-foot wide high-speed broom.
- Two (2) Oshkosh P-Series trucks with 22-foot high-speed snowplows.
- One (1) de-ice trailer with 50-foot spray boom to spread environmentally friendly liquid de-icing solutions to ensure the pavements do not freeze over in cold weather.
Muskegon's snow removal equipment used to remove snow and ice from the airport roadways, parking lots, and terminal sidewalks includes the following vehicles and equipment:
- Two (2) International Workstar trucks with 12-foot snowplows.
- Two Chevy pick-ups with a 6-foot snowplows.
- One Trackless MT Utility Tractor with snow blower and broom attachments.
- Snowblowers, backpack blowers, shovels and ice melt spreaders.
Dedication & Perseverance
MKG cannot stay operational without the hard work, effort, and skill required for the safe and efficient removal of snow and frozen precipitation, and the coordination of these efforts between Airport staff, airline personnel, FBO personnel, and the Muskegon Air Traffic Control Tower. The airport’s excellent record proves the effectiveness of the snow and ice control program.
The Northeast Chapter American Association of Airport Executives (NEC/AAAE) International Aviation Snow Symposium’s Balchen/Post Award recognizes airport for snow removal efforts. This nationally recognized award is presented to airport “Snow Crews” for dedicated efforts in maintaining airports in safe and operational status during each winter season.
All categories of airports – Commercial, General Aviation and Military – compete for these awards. Muskegon Airport staff was recognized for their efforts winning the Small Commercial Airport category (less than 100,000 annual passengers) for the 2007-2008 and 2008-2009 seasons.