If there’s a common thread amongst complaints we’ve heard about the recent weather, it’s the notion that the snow removal has been slow and that the state, county and municipalities have not done nearly enough to make the roads safe quickly.
Allow us to respectfully disagree.
For starters, Gov. Jack Markell and his advisors have played it smart. They have declared executive States of Emergency when road conditions were sketchy, and have flooded local news outlets with updates around the clock to keep the public informed. Keep an eye on our Web site during these storms. Those updates are largely coming from state and county officials.
And while the States of Emergency can be an inconvenience for those who need to get to work or the store, keep in mind that they serve dual purposes — they reduce the number of accidents because they keep down the sheer numbers of cars on the roads, and they keep the roads uncongested so the plows can get out and do their jobs as expeditiously as possible.
As for the plowing complaints, let’s get real. Delaware is not a “cold-weather” state. We’re in the coastal Mid-Atlantic region and heavy snowfalls are just not part of the regular equation, particularly here in southeastern Sussex County. The state has only so many plows at its disposal, and it appears to us that they have been running around the clock.
Should the towns themselves have snow plows at the ready? Please. If Ocean View bought four snow plows and kept them behind their town hall all year long, there would be a revolt. These are beach towns. To be more precise, these are beach towns with budget constraints and limited resources.
We’ve also heard quite a bit about how “people don’t know how to drive in the snow down here.” Two problems with that one. First, the majority of people who live down here came from somewhere else — where there is more snow. Second, nobody can drive well in the snow. It’s snow. Don’t be a hero. Drive responsibly.
We are quick to call out the county and state for their mistakes. This is not one of those times.