The Commercial-News, Danville, IL

March 27, 2013

Clear storm's snow quickly


DANVILLE — OK, it’s official. We’re ready for spring. The calendar says it’s spring. The longer days say it’s spring. The robins freezing in the trees say it’s spring.

Now, if Mother Nature would just get with the program, we can all start complaining about the heat instead of snow.

The winter blast that smacked us around Sunday shows how much at the mercy of nature we remain.

Road crews did a valiant job trying to stay ahead of the 11 or so inches of snow that fell, but it was a lost cause in many locations.

Thick, wet snow makes for tough driving — or walking, for that matter.

Some neighborhood residents and downtown locations did a good job of getting the snow cleared away from sidewalks quickly.

That’s a benefit to those who must walk to a job or school regardless of the weather and to the drivers passing them by on the streets.

Snow-covered sidewalks force pedestrians into snow-covered streets, creating a hazard for everyone involved.

Champaign and Urbana officials have designated certain areas of their city for rapid snow removal.

If snow isn’t cleared from sidewalks within the specified time, property owners can face fines.

Officials always can extend those deadlines after extraordinary storms, such as the one that visited Vermilion County on Sunday.

The point is not to harass property owners, but to increase the level of safety for those who have no choice but to be out and about after a snowfall.

It’s an idea more communities should adopt.