Southern Chester County endures another snow

Photo by Chris Barber A Kennett Square cockapoo shows his delight with the snow on Thursday.
Photo by Chris Barber A Kennett School District second grader enjoys his day off on Thursday.

By CHRIS BARBER

cbarber@21st-centuirymedia.com

KENNETT SQUARE -- Residents and emergency responders throughout southern Chester County responded early and vigorously on Thursday to the third snow that blanketed the area in the past 10 days.

Public works employees with plow trucks worked throughout the day to clear the roads, first pushing aside rapidly mounting fluffy, windswept amounts and later shoving heavy wet accumulations that turned soggy under temperatures that rose above freezing.

Emergency Management Coordinator for the Avon Grove Area Chuck Freese said the road crews made good progress clearing the main roads. At 10 a.m. he said, Traffic is moving almost normally on Baltimore Pike.

He added, however, that both London Grove and West Grove had declared states of emergency, which means that non-essential traffic must stay off the roads and that vehicles parked on snow emergency route had to be moved away or would be towed.

Later he received word that the canopy over the gas pumps at the Turkey Hill on Route 41 at Newark Road had collapsed under the weight of snow and ice, although the problems of trees and wires the region experienced last week were not nearly as widespread.

Last weeks storm kind-of did Natures pruning, so there isnt much left to come down, he said.

In Kennett Square, neighborhood residents stepped out to help each other clear their driveways and sidewalks after the fury of the storm abated at mid-morning. There about 11.5 inches of new snow were measured.

In one neighborhood, a man who asked not to be named was driving around with his four-wheel snow plow, helping out for free those who were shoveling. He said he was just having fun with his toy.

By early afternoon, the temperature had risen to the low 40s, and what had started out as a wind-swept blizzard overnight, turned into a soggy mess in many places.

In heavily rural Franklin Township, supervisors chairman John Auerbach said his crews, like others in the area, were watching their salt supply, having used much of it in the previous storms. He added, however, that his team recently sent a truck to the Port of Wilmington to get an extra load of 25 tons.

Auerbach said his township is in need of increased salt storage areas, inasmuch as it can only keep between 200 and 250 tons on hand at any one time.

Franklins township manager Joan McVaugh said that by early afternoon her crews had plowed all of the developments several times and had paid special attention to dangerous intersections and hazardous curves. She said there was enough salt for this storm, but they were watching the supply carefully and making sure not to waste it.

By 1 pm., she was optimistic. Some of our roads are showing black, she said.

Township secretary Sharon Norris was taking calls from residents who had problems. She said essentially people were polite in their responses to the local plowing efforts, although some complained that they wanted it more their own way.

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