Construction Workers Battle Cold Weather - KFYRTV.COM - Bismarck, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Construction Workers Battle Cold Weather

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Sub-zero temperatures kept most North Dakotans inside today, but some people worked outside and dealt with more than just the cold.

Through rain, sleet or snow postal workers aren't the only ones working through winter weather. Construction workers working on the sixth street parking ramp have been out all week slowly getting used to the winter conditions. They might be bundled up. But trying to stay warm and stay on schedule isn't easy for construction workers in this weather.

"Equipment doesn't want to start, people's fingers get cold, so they have to warm up a bit here and there," says Wayne Larson, Iron Workers Foreman.

And the cold changes the building process.

"It just takes a little longer to perform everything, we've got to shelter and put heat in there as we're pouring concrete and the concrete's got to be heated for like 72 hours after it's poured," says Kevin Siemieniewski, Comstock Construction.

Now, these guys will be working through almost any weather condition, but there is one that might stop them.

"The cold, you just live with it, you move on, shovel the snow off and keep going. But when the wind blows a lot, we can't run the cranes," says Siemieniewski. "It's just the wind chill, it takes a toll on the guys."

And some of those guys are experiencing their first North Dakota winter.

"I mean right now, I'm staying pretty warm. I'm trying to adapt to this weather. It's a whole different experience," says Omar Lopez, construction worker from Nevada.

But most of the workers say they're used to it by now.

"Just another day in North Dakota, I guess," says Larson.

Even when the equipment doesn't want to work as hard as them.

"Keep going, that's all you can do," says Siemieniewski.

The project superintendent from Comstock says that initially, it costs more to keep the project going through the cold. But it pays off when they can stay on schedule and get everything done on time.

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