Dependable Erection

Monday, February 01, 2010

School access fail

Leon Street, in front of Brogden Middle School, 5 pm Monday.

From city of Durham press release prior to winter storm, 1/29/10:
The City’s plan of action for clearing or reducing hazards on city streets is prioritized in the following order:
• Bridges and overpasses throughout the city.
• Major arterial streets within the city.
• Streets to essential health facilities, police and fire stations and critical community facilities.
• Routes to two City fuel sites.
• Streets within the central business district.
• Clear access to Durham Public Schools.
• All residential areas with priority initially to passage of emergency vehicles and then to all traffic.

As a friend noted, if we get any kind of weather the rest of the week, it'll be next Tuesday before the schools open. My understanding of DPS policy is if there's any ice on a road that has to be traveled by a school bus, all schools are closed.

I couldn't imagine being a working parent with a job that didn't pay me for my time off this week. Even with paid time off, having to use your vacation or sick leave in the middle of winter just to watch your kids because the schools aren't open would truly suck.



  • Well done, Barry. I thought the same thing as I passed Holt Elementary yesterday and saw similar conditions. I kept wondering why it took DPS officials until 2 pm to close schools for today (Tuesday), but then I realized that maybe they couldn't even get to the schools.

    By Blogger Steve, at 7:40 AM  

  • yes. it does suck. daycares also operate on the DPS closing schedule.

    By Blogger Natalie and Harris, at 9:58 AM  

  • It's a tough situation. Is it worthwhile to spend millions to support adequate snow clearing infrastructure that might be used once or twice a year? It clearly is from the perspective of the whole economy, which must lose more than that when the city shuts down for even a day, but it's a difficult pill to swallow for the government, which has to put up a lot of money for no measurable return in revenue.

    It's also difficult to get people involved about this as an issue, since such storms only tend to happen once a year (if that). By the time elections roll around, we've all forgotten.

    By Blogger Jeremy T, at 10:08 AM  

  • Except that we already have the equipment. The city's initial press release spoke of 37 plows or plow-equipped trucks. And this was a barely 6 inch snowfall, with temps up in the high 30s and low 40s within 48 hours.

    Commenter on another thread mentioned that Englewood Ave. in Walltown neighborhood got plowed, but adjacent Green St., which is a bus route, didn't.

    And Greg Nickels might have a different perspective on how long the voters' memory is.

    By Blogger Barry, at 10:24 AM  

  • It is rotten. The only good I've seen come of it is:
    1. Being 'trapped' in the house has led to massive amounts of organization.
    2. Similarly, we've spent a lot of down-time with the kids this week.
    3. There's a strengthening of relationships, as parents check closings the night before and compare schedules. My sister watched my kids yesterday and I'm available today to watch others' today. In an urban setting, it's nice to know we still have a close-knit community.

    By Blogger girlnblack77, at 11:03 AM  

  • Arnette and Shepherd around Morehead Elementary have been horrible since the weekend. Only late yesterday afternoon did I see a road plow (the orange kind that scrapes out ditches) on Lakewood Avenue. The street was still covered in snow/ice this morning and no activity on either Arnette or Shepherd.

    Thanks for keeping up on this stuff.

    By Blogger Andrew, at 10:56 PM  

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