Well, that certainly was a wake-up call, wasn’t it?
Last week’s storm that buried most of southern Ontario in 20+ centimetres of snow was a blunt reminder to area residents of what to do – and not to do – when Old Man Winter decides to flex his muscles.
We haven’t seen that kind of snow activity in five years and, by the time the flakes stopped falling late Friday, Hamilton and other regions were left under a blanket of white stuff that left many residents with aching backs from shovelling.
However, the storm certainly reinforced the fact that, yes indeed, we live in Canada (despite the recent mild winters) and there are certain precautions to take when it comes to a storm of this magnitude.
First, when weather forecasters are suggesting driving in a storm is not a wise choice and police are urging residents not to drive unless absolutely necessary, heed their advice when possible.
Unnecessary vehicular traffic only adds to the problems a storm brings – specifically, it makes the job all the more difficult for snow-clearing road crews.
And as for those road crews, here’s a tip of the hat to the beleaguered workers we are quick to blame when roads aren’t cleared fast enough to our liking.
They did a stellar job last week, for the most part, both in prepping for the onslaught of snow and dealing with it when it came. Most streets were passable by early Saturday.
As we said, there are little things that can be done during a snowstorm that make a big difference: digging out any fire hydrants near your property, ensuring your outside dryer vent area is clear of snow, helping to shovel out an elderly neighbour’s driveway/walkway or ensuring your vehicle isn’t in the way of a snowplow.
For your own sake, it’s also important to make sure your vehicle has an emergency kit in the event you do get stranded in a storm.