Edgemont youth wins ‘Name the Snowplow’ Contest

Photo by Eric Harrold/Fall River County Herald-Star

Landon Harrod, 11-years-old of Edgemont, was the winner of the Name the Snowplow contest for the Custer Area Department of Transportation. Landon is pictured here along with his parents, Tanya and Darrell Harrod, who are all posing next to the plow Landon officially named “Mt. Plowmore” as part of a statewide South Dakota DOT contest.


PIERRE – The South Dakota Department of Transportation (SDDOT) rolled out South Dakota’s first ever Name the Snowplow Contest in mid-January.

“The contest was designed to engage people across the state with the SDDOT in a fun and unique way,” says Interim Transportation Secretary Joel Jundt. “Safety on our roadways is our number one priority, and winter driving and snowplow safety awareness is vital to keeping people safe each and every day.”

When the contest ended on Jan. 31, 2021, over 800 entries had been submitted by individuals, families, elementary classrooms, senior living centers, and businesses across the entire state.

SDDOT staff then voted on the submissions. The winners will soon officially meet and take photos with their locally named snowplow.

As part of the contest, 11-year-old Landon Harrod of Edgemont’s suggestion of “Mt. Plowmore” was selected as the new name a snow plow that serves the Custer Area.

“The name Art was submitted by several people in the Belle Fourche Area in memory of 43-year SDDOT veteran snowplow operator, Art DeKnikker,” says Todd Seaman, Rapid City Region Engineer. “The opportunity to honor Art’s dedicated public service is a true testament to all our plow operators who work hard every day to keep citizens safe.”

Other winning snowplow names included: Aberdeen Area: – Darth Blader (Dave Bacon of Aberdeen); Huron Area – Snow Mater (Jim Bruce of Highmore); Mitchell Area – Blizzard Wizard (Cordell Davis of Plankinton); Mobridge Area – Winter Warrior (Marion Goehring of Herreid); Pierre Area – Lewis & Clark (Jackie Heier of Pierre); Rapid City Area – Polar Patroller (Tiffany Hoff of Rapid City); Sioux Falls Area – SnowBeGone Kenobi (Shawn Hanson of Sioux Falls); Watertown Area – Thaw Enforcement (Robert Innes of Aurora); Winner Area – Walter the Salter (Dairy Queen staff of Winner); Yankton Area – Frosty the Snowplow (Lilly Kroger of Beresford).

There are a total of four SDDOT Regions, including Aberdeen, Mitchell, Pierre and Rapid City, which all each divided into three different areas of operation. The Rapid City region then also includes Rapid City, Belle Fourche and Custer areas.

Following are some other “Snowplow Facts,” provided by Tyler Green with the SDDOT Division of Operations Support.

How many plows are in each of our Regions?

There are approximately 107 plows per Region. 

There is a total of 428 trucks and 23 tow plows spread across the state.

Average weight/height of a snowplow?

The average snowplow weighs around 58,000 lbs. and is 11’6” tall. 

The average Tow plow/ truck unit weighs around 88,000 fully loaded.

Avg. mile per gallon for fuel?

The Plows average about 3.5 to 4 mpg and run on low sulfur diesel/biodiesel blend.

How big is the engine in a plow?

Our plows run a 450hp Detroit engine, tow plows run a 505hp Detroit engine

How much snow does the average plow “push” in its lifetime? (In other words - what is the average longevity for a plow?)

The average lifespan of a plow truck is 15 years.

Our Plow Trucks are in essence a rolling computer, with highly technical salt and chemical rate application systems, currently 120 units have an onboard Data collector called an MDC (mobile data collector) this gives the operator the ability to relay real-time road conditions to our web based system and get salt and chemical rate suggestions back almost immediately, keeping us productive, efficient and fiscally responsible.  https://sd511.org.

Fall River County Herald Star

EDGEMONT OFFICE: 410 2nd Avenue   Edgemont, SD 57735-0660 | 605.662.7201
HOT SPRINGS OFFICE: 334 S. Chicago St.  Hot Springs, SD 57747 | 605.745.3930
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