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Front Page » February 2, 2010 » Opinion » Rantings and Ravings
Published 1,760 days ago

Rantings and Ravings


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By TERRY WILLIS
Sun Advocate reporter

As we settle into February it's beginning to feel like a long old winter. Another little snow storm dusted us again this weekend and makes spring seem so far away.

We sure need the snow. It was looking a bit bleak there for a while as January began. But Mother Nature made up for things fast and now we have piles of snow everywhere.

Every year, even with warnings to the contrary, people leave their cars parked along the streets. Just this week tickets appeared on windows of vehicles that had been plowed around in my neighborhood.

It is a problem when the cars are there and the snow plows come. Because they are big, they cannot make sharp turns. So when they have to work around an obstacle, they have to leave great areas of snow unplowed. Road ways used by the public are impeded because of a few individuals.

Our society has grown used to having a multitude a vehicles and many times we have more than we can drive at any one time. With that we need to find places to put all that we own. In older neighborhoods, especially, the driveways and garages were built in times before we had so many cars and toys to park.

For some residents it may be almost impossible to find a spot to park things off the road in front of their homes. It would be easier for them if they had a time during the day when the plow was scheduled to come by so they could temporarily move the offending vehicle.

Unfortunately, the nature of a storm does not always allow the road crews to work on a schedule. There is no easy solution to the issue.

The other snow related issue that is getting worse every year is the one about people pushing snow from their driveways into the streets. In the old days, when most of us had to use a shovel to clean out driveways it was easiest to push it side to side. Thus the snow remained on our property.

People with snow blowers usually blow it just a bit further to the sides and sometimes they send it out to the streets. But the popularity of four wheelers to push snow makes it easiest to push it off the driveway out into the street. Just when the road is clean, then it gets new doses of snow as people clear off the driveways.

Some get it all the way across to the other side, leaving ridges of snow across the street. Others leave piles, hoping the plow will come back and push it to somewhere else.

With this practice comes a new hazard. If you try and go somewhere after a storm you not only need to drive carefully because of the snow, but now you need to be on alert for the four wheelers that blast out across the roads so they can use their momentum to move the snow.

I have been the beneficiary of my neighbor's four wheeler plowing the mountain of road snow at the end of my driveway so I am not saying we should ban these or anything.

I do think we need to look at some community ordinances and practices that find a way to incorporate these good snow moving devices into our routines, while making sure we are not adding new dangers to an already hazardous time.

Be careful out there and lets work together to get through the winter. Spring will arrive when its darn well ready to.

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February 2, 2010
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