Alright class – settle down! Now; can anyone tell me what happens when you combine a light winter rain with falling December temperatures? That’s right! Black Ice ain’t just an AC/DC album title.
But as straightforward as that simple concept is, some folks seem to have a real problem wrapping their minds around it. To wit, you can only imagine my stunned surprise as I was making the best of some west side of Geneva morning rounds with nary a municipal salt truck in sight.
After all, it doesn’t take a Ph.D. chemist to understand that a pre-salting prophylactic measure might have been the best course of action. Not only does it prevent the ice crystals from forming, but when applied at the appropriate temperature, the medium actually works. Wait until the mercury dips below 20 and you may as well dump that salt straight into the river.
Apparently KDOT grasped my hypothesis because, during that same 12/29 driving foray, I saw three of their trucks on Randall and Keslinger Roads which weren’t nearly as bad as Geneva’s secondary streets to begin with.
Fisher Drive was a solid sheet of ice. Williamsburg sucked, Fargo was frozen, and Bent Tree Drive was more of a prophecy than a street name. As if Geneva drivers weren’t bad enough already, imagine what they’re like when they can’t even see the hazard.
If this was the only case of Geneva screwing up the 2013 plowing/deicing process, then I’d probably keep my big mouth shut because I’d prefer not to have my driveway permanently plowed in for the remainder of the winter. Those Public Works folks don’t take constructive criticism nearly as well as you’d like to think.
But it isn’t the only example.
As I previously pointed out on Patch (and the commentors generally agreed), they tend to plow subdivisions when the snow is already packed into the pavement and then they insist on salting the resulting glacier during the almost inevitable post snowstorm deep freeze.
And the sad thing is it wasn’t always like this in the City that doesn’t always work.
So here’s my solution – let’s bring former Streets Superintendent Steve LeMaire back. While he may have stolen $24,000 from the City via credit card purchases over the course of eight long years, at least he got the job done.
In fact, I’d personally be willing to cough up that extra $200 a month just for the privilege of driving through Geneva without taking my life into my hands every bleepin' time it bleepin’ snows. Perhaps some of my more adoring readers would be willing to chip in a few bucks themselves (Colin?).
Lest you accuse me of abusing this public forum and being the perpetual curmudgeon, I’ve previously approached the Mayor privately on this issue only to be completely deafened by the ensuing silence.
I’m sure he’s far too busy perfecting his latest City Council standup schtick where he will relentlessly browbeat a hapless boy scout or utterly embarrass our latest GPD hire. Note to the Mayor; if you put as much effort into running the city as you do into your unfortunate "comedy" routines, we'd probably have clear winter streets.
In the meantime, I might just buy an army surplus tank.
And if you’re ever in Fisher Farms, stop by and say hello. You’ll know my house by the eight feet of snow at the end of the driveway.