Dealing with snow: A few tips from Public Works

The City of Hood River will begin snow removal and sanding procedures when the snow buildup exceeds 3 inches and recommends that cars not be parked on the street. However, cars are allowed to park on the south and west sides of a street to allow city crews to quickly and efficiently clear the snow.

Streets connecting higher-traffic routes and hospital, police and fire station and emergency rescue units are given first priority. Those streets are:

n Oak Street between Front and Seventh

n Front Street

n First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth and Seventh streets between State and Columbia

n 13th Street between Oak Street and Belmont Avenue

n 12th Street between May Street and Belmont Avenue

n Belmont Avenue, A, B, C streets, and Taylor Avenue between 12th and 13th

City industrial streets, selected collector streets and bus routes have second priority, with school entries having third. All remaining streets, such as residential, are last.

A snowplow map is available at ci.hood-river.or.us. Click the Public Works link, then Streets and Sidewalks; the link is at the top of the page.

Property owners are responsible for removing ice and snow from sidewalks and around fire hydrants, as well as providing clear access to mailboxes.

Postal carriers need to be able to pull in and service the mailbox and then be able to pull forward. Instead of just a square in front of the mailbox, Postmaster General Kevin Branson says that the approach to and from the box needs to be clear of snow, trash cans and children’s toys for optimal safety.

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Tips for snow conditions from the City of Hood River:

n Avoid parking on the street — Move vehicles off the street to enable public works crews to work safely and efficiently in clearing the streets.

n Give plows and sanding trucks room to maneuver; do not follow too closely.

n Do not pass trucks when snow is being plowed or sand is being applied.

n Do not pull out into the intersection when snowplow trucks are approaching.

n Blocked driveways — It is inevitable that driveways will be blocked during plowing operations; this cannot be avoided. The public works workers regret this inconvenience, but have limited equipment and staff hours to clear all the city’s streets. Residents need to take responsibility to clear snow at the end of their driveway.

Sidewalks — It is the responsibility of the property owner or resident to clear snow and ice from sidewalks adjacent to the property.

Following a snow event, public works crews routinely sweep excess sand from the street. It is the residents’ and business owners’ responsibility to sweep excess sand that has accumulated on the sidewalk into the street for the street sweepers to pick up.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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