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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Safety First? Not In Seattle..

Seattle Refuses To Use Salt; Roads "Snow Packed" By Design
To hear the city's spin, Seattle's road crews are making "great progress" in clearing the ice-caked streets.

But it turns out "plowed streets" in Seattle actually means "snow-packed," as in there's snow and ice left on major arterials by design.

"We're trying to create a hard-packed surface," said Alex Wiggins, chief of staff for the Seattle Department of Transportation. "It doesn't look like anything you'd find in Chicago or New York."

The city's approach means crews clear the roads enough for all-wheel and four-wheel-drive vehicles, or those with front-wheel drive cars as long as they are using chains, Wiggins said.

The icy streets are the result of Seattle's refusal to use salt, an effective ice-buster used by the state Department of Transportation and cities accustomed to dealing with heavy winter snows.

"If we were using salt, you'd see patches of bare road because salt is very effective," Wiggins said. "We decided not to utilize salt because it's not a healthy addition to Puget Sound."
Police officers are having to make calls on foot because their cars can't make it up the intentionally icy hills. I'd bet the EMT and fire services are having problems too. The environuts running Seattle have decided that human life isn't worth protecting if it means endangering the environment by putting salt into seawater. Not to mention damage to the economy because of delayed shipping and deliveries, and shoppers unable to get to the stores. I'm glad I didn't stay in that smelly, protest happy, hippie enabling, liberal hell hole. I wonder how much ice they'll have to be buried under before they give up the "global warming" mantra?

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