Monday, February 21, 2011

Dear Mr. Weatherman - I just got done shoveling 10.5 inches of your 3-6 inch forecast

Taken with my iPhone in Warren around 7:00am on Feb 21, 2011
Several readings in my small condo yard all yielded right around 10.5 inches (26.67 cm)

Broad shot of where yard-
stick was. Note snow on
charcoal grill in background.

The weathercasters were pretty sure we were going to get a little snow, and a whole lot of ice.  The computer models showed the snow/ice line coming right through metro Detroit and we were told the less ice we get, the more snow we will have.  We were expecting up 0.25 - 0.5" of ice coating (0.635 - 1.27cm).  This would have meant a broad loss of power in the metro-Detroit area, which I was dreading.  With heavy snow, there are far fewer power outages. So... yes... I was praying for the snow.  I'd rather be snowed in with power than to be iced-in with no power.

By about 8:00 last night, weathercasters updated their forecast and predicted higher snow totals since the snow/ice line was staying more south.  I fully expected to go to work this morning and kept clearing the snow, even from the next to my car, which contractors normally handle, when I thought the freezing rain and sleet might start (there's nothing worse than trying to move 6+ inches of snow when it is coated in ice). 

By 11:30pm, I had removed about 7 inches and it was coming down hard.  This morning it topped out at about 10.5 inches here in Warren.  The yardstick is shown in an area of my small courtyard that is smoothest and untouched by snowblower activity.  I took readings in a birdbath too where snow made a peak and that was 11 inches.

I woke up twice during the night and saw snow removal crews working in the condo complex where I live. I feel bad for these guys.  I woke up this morning and it doesn't even look like they did anything and they are nowhere to be found.  Who can blame them for getting some rest?

Last night about 10:00, they pushed snow on the sidewalk that runs along all four adjacent condo units down in between our cars (this is typical as it must be pushed down to the street where it is plowed away). I figured it would be cleaned out by morning, as it usually is.  This left piles of about 2ft  (~60 cm)  high on either side of my car, which I can't even walk around at the moment. The only way I can clear it, is to take one shovel at a time and walk about 10-15 steps with it down the drive way.  Putting it in the street does nothing to help me get out, so it is a matter of waiting for them to come back. The snow removal people do it in a coordinated way with a guy in plow moving what they push to the street, down to the end.

I told my boss when I called her that the snow removal guys would probably have that snow cleared out with enough time for me to come in for at least a half-day.  I'm having second thoughts about that.  There is still no sign of them.  If they are getting some rest, I can't blame them at all.  It's days like today that we must exercise patience and put our feet in the boots of those responsible for cleaning up.  I'm grateful I at least have vacation time to use because I know for some in metro-Detroit, it will be an unpaid day off.
Truly, we have nothing to complain about here in metro-Detroit when you look at what others have dealt with. LOL - here are a few pics to put things into perspective.  Some of these were attributed to a snowstorm in Lead, South Dakota in January of 2011, and may very well be.  Others have said some of these are from snowstorms in Canada in previous years.  Eitehr way, I can't even imagine this. I would not want to be with a state of that when it begins to melt!

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