Consider requiring sidewalks be shoveled within 48 hours so school kids can get to school and pedestrians can walk safely. Other counties make it the law, so should Fairfax.
The County gave smart advice to ask people to dig out fire hydrants - but unless they were flagged before the storms it was impossible to know where they were after they were buried in snow or plow drifts. Adding hydrant location data to Google maps or other public sources for citizens to find them would have helped (and this would be useful for homeowners insurance and general safety too - not just snowstorms)
1. have an online map that shows where the plows are.
2. post an online schedule of when plows are scheduled to be dispatched to various regions/streets
in my neighborhood, there were places where the snow plows could not clear due to cars parked on the street (for example, two cars parked on opposite side of the street across from one another). Although residents have been requested to park in driveways when snow is predicted, some did not care and we had problems for two weeks getting out of our street.
VDOT's use of heavy equipment to clear residential streets "curb to curb" may have seemed like a good idea at the time, but created a secondary problem -- mountains of snow that completely buried sidewalks. This created an extremely dangerous situation for pedestrians, especially school children, who were forced to walk in the street. Here are some suggestions to prevent this from happening in the future. 1) Instruct ...more »
Our neighborhood received a plow a week after the snow which provided one lane of traffic. A week later, two plows came into the neighborhood and cleared curb-to-curb. In doing so, they dumped snow on the yards as mentioned in another idea; however, to get to the yard, they drove up over the curb, left huge holes in the yard from driving over it to get to the dumping ground and in some cases even tore up the sod. We ...more »
Snow plow operators should be instructed NOT to plow in side streets. When getting to a side street, they can turn into the side street and place the additional snow against the curb, OR, once they plow a lane in each direction of the main street, they should be instructed to come back and remove the snow and ice they placed in the intersections of side streets, thus opening up the side street to four wheel drive and ...more »
VDOT's order of priority, which you can hear about once an hour on WTOP during a big storm, is to keep main arteries clear, then to move to important road, then secondary roads, then down to the neighborhoods. This is a lousy plan, especially when, as has been true for nearly every significant storm I've experienced in the last 20 years, VDOT more or less insists on plowing the main roads down to clean pavement before ...more »
We seem to always be struggling to find ways to make up snow days. Just build it into the school year.
While some teachers used Blackboard.com to help their students keep up with homework and assignments, its use was inconsistent. Parents should be told at Open House that EVERY time there is a snow day, they should be sure to have their students check Blackboard.com for assignments. It not only keeps academics up to schedule so that classes do not fall behind before SOLs, but it also keeps kids' busy while they are home ...more »
I followed a VDOT dump truck for miles down Rte 236 two days after the storm and it never once lowered the plow blade to clear all the snow, slush and ice it was driving over, and sometimes swerving around. The plow drivers should be instructed to not waste their travel time to another site when they could be plowing and helping to clear the roads along the way.
As evidenced by the number of ideas posted so far, a good many residents have opinions about what could have been done and what could have been done better. But keep in mind: This year is/was an anomaly. If any of us lives in Fairfax County for the next 60 years, we might never see another storm like the two we had this winter. One could argue it's doubtful we'll ever see such storms again in this region. There ...more »