Winter Weather Advice:
Winter, at least around here, has arrived but this year things may be a bit different.
"How's that?", you ask.
Well, most of us are not in the business of road and facility grounds maintenance so we may not be aware of how much it costs to clear, salt and sand roads, parking lots, sidewalks and pathways. Everybody's budgets including municipal and governmental ones are being strained and the cost of snow removal and the like are not immune from budget reductions.
Okay, so what can I do about any of this?
Knowing that road plowing may be done less frequently than in years past means being prepared. You can:
- Make sure your car has good winter weather tires, adequate to handle snowy and icy road conditions.
- Equip your vehicle with appropriate winter emergency gear; shovel, salted sand, blanket, first aid kit, etc.
- Carry a charged cell phone for emergencies.
- Do not use your cell phone while driving especially on less than perfect road surfaces.
- Call 511 before traveling to learn about road conditions and adjusting your travels accordingly.
- Allow extra time for traveling, knowing that you may encounter snow covered roads on which you will need to travel slower than usual.
- AND don't try to pass any plow truck you might be fortunate enough to be following! Hang back and let the truck clear your way.
We also need to understand that sidewalks, walkways and pathways may not be cleared as well as in the past. Knowing this, you can:
- Wear appropriate footwear, something that provides good traction on snow and ice.
- Look carefully where you are walking at all times.
- Slow down, carefully shuffle across spots that look or are slippery.
- Don't run.
- Carry manageable loads making multiple trips if necessary.
- Don't be a "Podestrian" meaning one who is so into listening to their iPod like device that they can't hear or notice cars and other traffic around them.
Be careful, be safe, be ready and don't let slippery, snow covered roads, sidewalks and walkways get you down.