With the exemption of a some abandoned cars blocking a road, the feedback we have heard from the community on the City’s response to last week’s snow has been mostly positive. The City published a press release (below) detailing their strategy.
How do you think the City’s response to the snow was? Let us know in the comments.
Press release below
Winter arrived early this week with an arctic chill that paralyzed the region resulting in some snow, extremely cold temperatures, power outages, traffic snarls, and school closures. The City of Mountlake Terrace has been preparing for this scenario. The result is that we were ready and mobilized to respond to all that Mother Nature could throw at us.
The Public Works Department began operations on Sunday afternoon, applying deicer to primary routes in advance of the forecasted snow (accumulation was only about 2 inches in our community). As snow began to fall Monday morning our Public Works crew quickly responded utilizing all available equipment. The initial response activity was to apply road sand aiding in providing traction to vehicles on primary routes, hills and at intersections. Trucks did not initially plow the snow as the snows consistency and relatively small amount made using the plow ineffective early in the event. On Monday night crews worked until approximately 9:00 PM. Crews returned to work at 5:00 AM on Tuesday and stayed on shift through the evening commute. On Tuesday crews were able to shift focus beginning work on second and third tier routes and to plow snow off primary routes in locations where traffic, deicer and the warmth of the day had begun to break up the packed snow and ice.
On Wednesday, crews once again started their shift at 5:00 AM, the focus has been clean up operations consisting of applying sand along third tier routes and a large portion of residential streets. Periodically through the day, trucks return to the primary routes to plow off snow and ice loosened by traffic, deicer and the warmly of the day and to reapply sand and deicer as required.
Overall the response to the event has been highly effective, deicing efforts clearly helped where applied preventing the bonding of snow to roadways. Drawing from this experience it is anticipated that use of the deicing chemicals will be expanded to include all of the arterial routes. The use of the deicing agent is favorable to spreading of road sand which must be later cleaned up through aggressive street sweeping and disposed of as solid waste at considerable expense.
Most drivers stayed off the roads on Monday and Tuesday given the extreme cold and harsh conditions. Residents are encouraged to stay off roads during these types of events unless absolutely necessary. If they must take to the roads, drivers are advised to allow plenty of time to get to their destination and allow plenty of room between their vehicle and the vehicle ahead.
As previously noted, it is also important for citizens to take time to prepare for potential emergencies and severe weather such as the one that impacted our region this week. It is recommended that residents prepare to be self-sufficient and have supplies for a minimum of three days, preferably longer if possible. It’s also important to practice for emergencies. This week’s event is probably just the first of several winter storm events meteorologists are predicting for our region this winter.