Had about enough?Published 10:21am Tuesday, January 5, 2010
By JESSICA SIEFF
Niles Daily Star
If anyone’s patience has been worn thin by the recent winter weather, take note: there’s not much relief expected any time soon.
By 3 p.m. Monday, Andrew Lyle was out in his driveway blowing snow into fluffy white piles for the second time that day.
There’s no telling just how many times he’d been out over the last four days.
Michiana has been bombarded with snow since early Friday morning and it continues to cause problems as the National Weather Service has issued a Lake Effect Snow Warning for Niles and surrounding areas until 4 p.m. today.
“Snow is never easy,” Lisa Croteau, executive director of Niles Main Street, said Monday.
Downtown businesses were given the chance to push their snow out into Main Street Monday night, where city road crews planned to pick it up – something Croteau and Public Works Director Neil Coulston said the two groups try to coordinate when snowfalls get heavy.
“We typically don’t do that unless you get crazy snow like this,” Croteau said.
The city was forced to call in contractors Monday to help with the snow ridges that lined the center of the downtown area streets. Crews hadn’t expected the additional snowfall that came overnight Sunday, which made keeping up the fresh snow a difficult job.
“The latest heavy snowfall was kind of a surprise,” Coulston said.
An additional 2 to 4 inches are expected today, according to the National Weather Service.
Additional snowfall amounts, Coulston said Monday could “definitely slow things down.”
As it happened, little accumulation took place overnight, but roads are slick. Calls to area law enforcement agencies Monday afternoon were met with staff commenting that most if not all officers were out patrolling roads that could be slick in some spots.
“It’s hard for everybody, no doubt about it,” Coulston said.
A majority of people don’t plow or shovel their public sidewalks, Coulston added, a fact that can make conditions dangerous as motorists and pedestrians try to share the road.
He encouraged residents to do their best in cleaning off sidewalks and driveways, or helping those who aren’t able to do it for themselves.
“It helps pedestrians, it helps mail delivery, it helps newspaper delivery,” Coulston said.
The National Weather Service shows snow in the forecast through the week into Saturday, meaning motorists, travelers and residents will have to tread carefully for a while longer.
Winter’s grip has been tight over much of the country, with colder than normal temperatures reaching down as far as Florida.