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Tag Archive | "snow"

Out of the Attic


Main Street in Cedar Springs during the blizzard of 1978

Main Street in Cedar Springs during the blizzard of 1978

Tired of the snow?

If you think it’s bad right now, look at the result of the blizzard of 1978. This is what Main Street in Cedar Springs looked like, and many snowpiles across the area lingered til March. It kind of feels like that now, doesn’t it? Many are tired of the snow and ice and frigid temperatures. A couple of days in the 30s and 40s last week gave us hope that spring is right around the corner, but the return of sub-zero temps, more snow, and the forecast from WOOD-TV’s Bill Steffen has all but dashed those hopes. He says we are looking the rest of March to be colder than normal. In one of his updates last week, he said maybe Cedar Springs should start making some green flannels. If only we could, Bill! Thanks to Ed Bremmer for the photograph.

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Fun in the snow


N-Fun-in-snow-Guigelaar

We’ve had a lot of winter snow this year, but not a lot of “fun in the snow” photos. Here we see Harrison Guigelaar, 21 months, of Nelson Township, having fun in the snow. Doesn’t it just want to make you smile?

 

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Keep sidewalks and hydrants clear of snow


Homeowners should keep fire hydrants clear and sidewalks shoveled. Photo courtesy of Howard City Police Department.

Homeowners should keep fire hydrants clear and sidewalks shoveled. Photo courtesy of Howard City Police Department.

We received messages from both the City of Cedar Springs and Howard City Police asking for people to keep sidewalks and hydrants clear of snow.

The City of Cedar Springs has an ordinance that requires homeowners and businesses to keep the sidewalks in front of their homes clear of snow and ice. If it happens during the day, the person has 12 hours after it stops to remove it, and if it happens overnight, they have until 6 p.m. the next day.

“The City could clear it and charge for it, or write a ticket if they chose to,” explained City Manager Thad Taylor. “But we haven’t wanted to do that with the harsh weather conditions we’ve had,” he explained, noting the amount of snow and below zero temps. “We understand that the weather has been brutal, but now that the temperature is climbing back up, we just need people to voluntarily take care of it.”

Taylor noted that the main reason for the ordinance is for safety reasons. Besides the obvious issue of slipping and falling, Taylor pointed out that if sidewalks aren’t clear, pedestrians must walk on the street. “If pedestrians and drivers are vying for the same space on the road, bad things could happen,” he said.

He also pointed out that there are some places where there is bone dry concrete. “A lot of people are taking care of it and we truly appreciate homeowners and business owners who are keeping their sidewalks clear,” said Taylor.

Fire hydrants also need to be clear of ice and snow, to help local firefighters in case of an emergency.

 

 

 

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MDOT warns motorists, private plows of winter hazards


CAR-Fast-FactsA private snowplow pushes snow into a state highway, causing a public plow to crash and roll over, injuring the driver. Meanwhile, in another area a motorist disregards winter conditions, traveling too fast and crashes into the rear of a Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) plow, disabling it.

Those are just two cases of hazardous actions in winter resulting in crashes earlier this month in Michigan, and in both cases taking two winter maintenance vehicles out of commission.

“Slippery roads, reduced visibility, and excessive speeds greatly reduce the margin of error in winter driving,” said State Transportation Director Kirk T. Steudle. “We implore private plow operators and motorists to be extra cautious, and avoid doing anything that adds to the hazards of winter driving or roadway maintenance.”

Two main concerns are when residents and businesses pile snow at the ends of driveways along the highway shoulder, and when snow is pushed across the road, leaving snow or slush on the road surface.

The Michigan Vehicle Code prohibits depositing “snow, ice, or slush on any roadway or highway,” and “the obstruction of safety vision by removal or deposit of snow, ice, or slush.” This includes the end of driveways, where banked snow can reduce visibility for vehicles trying to enter the roadway. Leaving a trail of snow on the pavement while plowing across the road also can create an added hazard to unsuspecting motorists and to road maintenance personnel.

Motorists also should be particularly careful around winter maintenance snowplows and salt trucks. These large, powerful vehicles may be traveling at slower speeds than vehicles around them, and may be obscured by blowing snow.

“For your safety and the safety of our operators, it’s important to give snowplows a buffer to do their work,” Steudle said.

Some tips for motorists encountering snowplows:

• Snowplows have limited visibility and drivers cannot see directly behind their trucks;

• Snowplows often throw up clouds of snow behind them, reducing visibility for drivers following behind them;

• Motorists should never attempt to pass a moving snowplow on the right. With new wing plows and tow plows, the blade can clear the shoulder and the lane of travel simultaneously. Motorists attempting an illegal pass through a snow cloud on the right and/or shoulder of the road most likely won’t see the plow blade and run the risk of a serious crash; and

• MDOT snowplows throughout Michigan will be driving at 25 mph when applying salt, which helps keep more salt on the roadway driving lanes where it is most effective. Snowplows may travel at up to 45 mph when plowing only.

MDOT says: Drive like you want to make it home tonight.

 

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Winter storm and frigid temps hit area


An early January winter storm over the weekend and bitterly cold temperatures Monday through Wednesday made travel hazardous and caused hundreds of schools and businesses to close in West Michigan.

Besides ice and snow, we saw temperatures below zero, with wind chill as cold as 20 below. The ice crystals freezing in the air did cause a winter phenomenon not often seen here—a sun dog, or snow rainbow. It’s caused when the sun’s light refracts through ice crystals in the atmosphere. We received photos from several residents in the Cedar Springs/Sand Lake area that saw it Tuesday morning. (See photos above.)

Meteorologists are now predicting that we could get ½ to an 1” of rain on Friday, and with all the snow, it won’t have anywhere to go, and could freeze on Saturday, making travel difficult for Sunday morning.

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Enforce snow ordinances


Just wondering what gives the City Manager Christine Burns the right to pick and choose what city ordinances to enforce? The city has an ordinance for shoveling the snow on the sidewalks in town and especially Main Street. When was the last time they wrote a ticket for not shoveling? Red Flannel Day showcases the city and businesses, and when visitors return around the holidays to shop and eat they find snow on some downtown sidewalks, with curbside snow high enough it prevents them from opening the passenger doors. The piles of snow on Main Street are high enough that people who do shovel have no place to put it, as the city waits for spring to melt the snow. Let’s take care of your own house before you worry about someone else. Maybe you could use the American Legion Hall lot for the snow.

Gerald Skelonc, Solon Township


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I’m snow excited. . .


Kids weren’t the only ones happy to have a snow day from school on Friday, February 24. The snowman on the right was so excited to see some new snow that he did a handstand! Kimberly Cartwright’s grandchildren, Kiley, 6, Makenna, 3, Riley, 6, and Kaleb, 9, had fun building their snowmen at grandma’s house on their day off school.

Send us your winter photos! Send them to news@cedarspringspost.com, mail them to us at PO 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319, or drop them at our office at 36 E. Maple in Cedar Springs.

 

 

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A winter wonderland


Last week we featured flowers blooming in January because of the unseasonably warm weather. There’s no danger of that now!
Several inches of snow fell over the weekend, causing a snow day for schools on Friday, and slippery road conditions Monday. According to WOODTV 8 meteorologist Bill Steffen, more snow is on the way for this weekend.
Mary Cain, of Solon Township, took these beautiful photos after the snowfall last weekend. Thanks, Mary, for sharing them with us!
If you have winter photos you’d like to share, email them to news@cedarspringspost.com.

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Fun in the snow


Judy Porter sent us this photo of Cousins Kalab Palmer, 8, and Nicolas Hernandez, 8, making snow trails waist-deep after the recent blizzard. It was a snow day from school, and a play day at grandma’s!
If you have winter fun photos you’d like to send us, email them to news@cedarspringspost.com.

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Winter storm dumps more snow


The scene on US131 at the Jefferson/Morley exit Sunday during the snowstorm.

The last traces of the late January blizzard were just melting away when Mother Nature dealt us another blast on Sunday, February 20 and into the early morning hours of Monday.

Heavy snow, winds, sleet and freezing rain made traveling dangerous, and caused accidents on US131 near the Morley/Jefferson Road exit Sunday afternoon that involved 50-60 cars. The highway was shut down for several hours during the cleanup.

According to the National Weather Service in Grand Rapids, the Cedar Springs, Sparta, Sand Lake area received 8-10 inches of new snow. Schools across the area were closed both Monday and Tuesday.

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