By John Lauritsen

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As the snow continues to fall across Minnesota, there are some businesses cashing in.

Between snow blowers breaking down and drivers getting into fender benders, those we turn to get us back up and running are having a hard time keeping up.

Bryan Guyton and his crew take care of Ronald McDonald Properties.

“Whoa man, I’ve been busy, busy, busy,” Guyton said.

And since the beginning of February, Guyton has been doing double-duty: Snow blowing at work and then at home. With record-breaking snow, he’s become a parts regular at Cedar Small Engine.

“All set to go whether I want to be or not,” he said.

A few weeks ago before all this started, Cedar Small Engine maybe had 10 snow blowers waiting to be repaired. Now, they have more than 130 waiting to be fixed. And it will be weeks before this sea of snow blowers is gone. Belts, brakes and wheels are in high demand.

“We are saying St. Patrick’s Day. You will be drinking green beer before you get your blower back, but that’s about where we are at right now,” said Derrick Wood of Cedar Small Engine.

(credit: CBS)

It’s not just the used snow blowers, but also the new ones. Last Thursday, they got 30 new machines. By Saturday, they only had one left.

“Pandemonium,” Wood said. “It’s been really busy.”

The feeling is mutual at Latuff Brothers Auto Body in St. Paul.

“With every storm we get a surge of eight to 16 towings a day,” Robert Latuff said.

But as car casualties mount, Latuff Brothers face their own snow dilemma. They have twice as many vehicles in their lot as they normally do. And that means they need a little help to make space.

“With as much snow as there has been we’ve had to remove snow a couple of times just to have room for all the cars,” Latuff said. “There’s only so much snow you can have in the parking lot before you have to have it moved,”

It’s their busiest year in about seven years, and the damage to vehicles varies quite a bit: From fender benders and broken mirrors, to vehicles that need up to $20,000 in repairs.

It’s looking like winter wants to linger, so that means, once again, take it easy on the roads.

John Lauritsen


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