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Is snow removal as good as it used to be?

Posted: February 8, 2012 - 9:00am  |  Updated: February 9, 2012 - 11:14am

As a long-term resident of the Soldotna area, I am a bit concerned to see a decline in road plowing quality. There was once a time when the plow trucks would do things such as cut-in drive-ways so lower clearance vehicle owners didn't damage their rigs, push back snow banks away from turning roads so that motorists could see, and avoid leaving middle-of-the-road banks. The last few years I've noticed all of the above has halted, even in times of low-snow fall or when the roads are being cleaned-up from recent thaws. Some of these choices present higher risks to drivers than others, failing to push snow back results in an increase in "creeping" by motorists attempting to pull out of roads and parking lots. Creeping, meaning slowly moving into the road, as a result I myself have had to swerve into other lanes to avoid hitting many front ends this year alone. The visually extended "end" of the road, also seems to reduce the time people slow before trying to stop, resulting in cars sliding into roadways.

Adding to the danger of such situations, the middle-of-the-road banks can prevent you from swerving into the other lane to move, or may force you into the ditch. Those same banks create a lesser ability to avoid moose crossing the road as well. 

While I appreciate all our plow drivers do -- I couldn't get off Robinson Loop if they didn't -- a little renewal in quality could save lives in this heavy snow-fall winter we're experiencing.

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