Fall has its disadvantages

Published 9:14 am Tuesday, October 30, 2007

By Staff
Fall is a favorite season among most people. The colors of the trees are bright and vibrant, the air is crisp and cool, the thought of sweatshirts and jeans seems too comfortable to be true and hot cider and chocolate provide comfort on cool nights.
While all these may bring a smile to one's face, the one thing that seems to make us frown is the thought of having to rake leaves and get things around the yard prepared for the upcoming winter months.
If you're lucky like very few of us are, you may not have any trees in your yard, or the leaves may blow away, leaving you with little work. Or, if you're like the majority of residents, you're stuck raking, mowing, burning or bagging your leaves for an entire day. This is a lot of work, but it's important to get finished before the weather gets too cool and the snow arrives.
Not raking leaves in the fall means they will hang around all winter long. By spring time, these leaves are actually harder to rake. Months of sitting on a wet, cold ground usually turn the leaves into a black, mucky mess, making them almost impossible to rake up. It's also bad for your yard and is known to kill grass.
Raking leaves can be a fun family project or can provide an excellent workout. The more people you have to help, the less time it will take.
If you're unsure about where to put your leaves, contact your local authorities for information. In most cases, you cannot burn leaves in the city. Rather, you should rake them to the side of the street curb or bag them and put them by the street for street workers to pick up.
In Niles Township, residents are able to burn their leaves with caution.
Fall leaf collection in the city of Niles began Monday and will continue until all streets have been gone over.
Leaves are collected one ward at a time, with this year's program starting with the first ward.
Remember these steps before bagging or raking your leaves. This not only applies to the city, but anyone who has a leaf pick up scheduled. It's also important to remember to not throw leaves away for the garbage companies to pick up.
Rake leaves to the back of the curb and not onto the pavement. Leaves raked into the street can cause flooding problems, create a safety hazard and hampers snow removal operations
This program is for leaves ONLY. Leaves mixed with brush, limbs, trash, ashes or other debris will not be picked up
Leaves must be raked out in advance of the leaf vacuums. Leaves raked out afterwards will not be picked up
Please move your vehicles to off-street locations when the crews are in your neighborhood, both for your benefit and your neighbor's. Cars parked in the street slow the collection process down significantly and force the crews to leave piles of leaves behind that can not be reached with the equipment
Please do not cover the water meter castings in the boulevard area. This prevents meter readers from taking actual readings and requires them to estimate your water usage.