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South Williamsport, PA
United States

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Gazette and Bulletin: June 19, 1931 – Williamsport’s White Wings Work While City Sleeps

Williamsport’s “White Wings” work while you sleep. That is, they begin to work cleaning the paved streets every night promptly at midnight. They with their big sweeping apparatus, work from midnight to 7 a.m.  These crews are connected with the highway department and consist of eight men, two on the big sweeper, two on the

Williamsport’s “White Wings” work while you sleep. That is, they begin to work cleaning the paved streets every night promptly at midnight. They with their big sweeping apparatus, work from midnight to 7 a.m. 

These crews are connected with the highway department and consist of eight men, two on the big sweeper, two on the follow up truck, and four men who push hand carts and clean the gutters with heavy brooms. The “White Wings,” as they are familiarly called, cover between 25 and 30 miles each morning. There is a sprayer on the front of the sweeper truck that dampens the pavement before the sweeper’s dust rollers gather up the dirt, depositing it in large bin above, thus avoiding stirring up a large amount of dust. 

About this time of year an average of six big truckloads of dirt are picked up each night. Both the sweeper and follow up trucks carry an abundance of red warning lights. 

The work is done between midnight and 7 a.m. for the reason that there are fewer automobiles on the streets and along the road to contend with. Each week at this season of the year the men in charge of the sweeper report that the number of cars parked along the curb all night increases and makes it more difficult to properly clean the streets.

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