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Hiring Hoosiers: Cleaning up Indiana's busiest roads

Someone's gotta do it!
road clean up.PNG
Posted at 5:30 AM, Nov 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-19 07:16:10-05

Hiring Hoosiers is an initiative from RTV6 that works to connect Hoosiers to employment opportunities, career development resources, training programs and educational paths. Learn more about Hiring Hoosiers and see new stories weekdays at 6 a.m. on RTV6.

INDIANAPOLIS — It's something most of us never think about while driving to our destination.

Someone has to take on the role of maintaining and clearing our state's interstates and highways.

"You think about roadkill and don't really think about who has to pick it up, but our maintenance crews do that, but so much more," says INDOT Spokesperson Mallory Duncan from the East Central District. "They take care of the signs on the interstates. They take care of guardrails. They take care of barrier walls."

It is not always a glamorous job, but it helps keep Hoosiers and our visitors who use the roads safe.

Donnell Blakely joined the maintenance team with INDOT last February. He let us tag along as the team got called out to clear a deer carcass.
"As quick as we can, we would like to get on it and get it out of the way," says Blakely. "That's just part of the job. We multitask, so this is just one small point of what we do."

INDOT maintenance workers wear a variety of hats.

"No day is the same for them, so they'll go out in the morning and maybe repair some guardrail. Then in the afternoon, they'll get a call about something by the side of the road they need to pick up, a hazard in the road, or they are the ones out there doing emergency pothole patching in the winter," says Duncan. "So, their job just extends to everything that we could ever need on the roads."

Some tasks could include moving a mattress that flies into the roads, fixing a street sign, assisting in a crash cleanup, and salting the streets.
"Some of the downfalls is we have to go into places that are very uncomfortable," says Blakely. "We have to do things that a lot of people don't want to do and don't have to do because we are in place here to take care of those things."

But Blakely says he really enjoys his job keeping our roads clear.
"We have a good time," says Blakely. "It's a good crew that we work with."

INDOT has several different districts across the state - the largest is East Central covering the Indianapolis metro area, and that district hires around 100 seasonal workers ahead of the first snowfall.
INDOT needs more workers during the winter months to drive plows and patch potholes.

To work on a crew, workers must have proof of CDL. A GED is not required but helpful in the hiring process. Workers must be able to work overnights for snow and some holidays.

To apply, visit and search your area.

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