Our View: Clearing up any snow removal issues
Snow is a beautiful accent during winter to the previously green scenery on campus. When snow becomes a burden for students, staff and campus services, the once attractive snow shows its gray, menacing muck side.
Problems relating to snow removal can cause tension on either side. Students may want every inch of the snow and ice cleared, while people on the snow crews may understand well the near impossible nature of clearing everything. Despite the obvious tension and possible misunderstandings, there should be a different way to view snow on campus and how we deal with it.
Parking lot etiquette may be a new term to some people, and this may point to the lack of it. When snow covers the parking lines, it creates a difficult situation for parking. Exercising a thoughtful attitude toward other drivers can enable easier parking.
If the parking lines are not available, do your best to not occupy multiple spaces or leave an extreme amount of room between cars. Do not pull up much farther than you normally would if there was not snow. Use the small islands of trees in the parking lot as a guideline for how far you should pull up.
A positive part of snow removal on campus is the availability of salt. When the snow crew or campus services are too busy on other parts of school, the buckets of salt allow for employees and students to combat the prevalence of ice. Campus services does an excellent job of keeping campus clear and safe with this helpful measure.
With the positive parts of snow removal also comes the negative side. Some students are not always satisfied with the degree of snow and ice left on campus. Senior Josiah Staggers feels snow removal is sometimes lacking on campus.
“I feel like we have to walk through piles of snow,” Staggers said. “Sometimes [snow removal] is not done in a timely manner.” He recognizes when a large storm hits that clearing all the snow can be difficult, and it is sometimes understandable.
Staggers said increasing the size of the crew can help cover all of campus better. He has also heard stories from other students about people slipping on the ice. Concerning the upperclassman apartments such as Babcock or Crawford, Staggers said the parking lot is not being cleared.
Josh Thayer, a sophomore who has been working on Cornerstone’s ground department and snow crew for the past year and a half, said in an e-mail that there usually are not too many complaints.
“When we get complaints, it will usually be the day of the snow storm hitting us,” Thayer said. “Complaints consist of maybe administration calling us to have us get over there early, but honestly [there are not] many complaints.”
When students examine the work of the snow crew, Thayer wants them to understand the workers’ dedication.
“I want people to know that we as a snow crew work extremely hard the morning of the storm. Our crews are filled with dedicated individuals who signed up to get up at 5 a.m. to make sure that the walks are ‘walkable’ for their fellow students,” Thayer said. “We are often gone and done before students are up. I feel that snow crew is often taken for granted.”
Although there can be some disconnect between the desires of students who want more of campus cleared on a timely basis and the actual labor that the snow crew can give, major issues have not surfaced recently. Not everyone is always pleased with the prevalence of snow and ice, but campus services puts in hard work to keep the Cornerstone community safe.