Sidewalks covered in snow, people walking in the street
Tue, 17 Dec 2013 23:10:10 GMT —
Sidewalks in many residential areas of Toledo are covered in snow.
Walkways are unshoveled, and unsalted, leaving those who travel on foot out walking in the street.
"All the snow, people were in the streets walking. All the sidewalks are full. We need people to come out and plow," says Mary Johnson, who lives near Detroit Avenue and Dorr Street.
Johnson clears her sidewalk, and has done it several times in the last few days, but she doesn't stop at her property line.
"We clean up. We try to clean vacant houses next to where we live. And sidewalks too, so kids can get on and walk to school," John said.
Unfortunately, not every neighborhood has a "Mary Johnson" to help out, but every street near her has many vacant homes, no one clearing the way.
David Pratt, with Streets, Bridges and Harbors said "A lot of the vacant houses and vacant properties are in areas where there is a lot of pedestrian traffic."
City employees have been working around the clock to clear snow, but they don't clear sidewalks of private homes, even if they are vacant.
"A lot of people own the properties. There's a lot of vacant landlords. There are some that are owned by the city," said Pratt.
Property owners face a fine and misdemeanor charges if snow isn't cleared within 24 hours of a storm.
That applies to business properties as well.
There are plenty of places where you can't even see the sidewalk, even if you wanted to trudge through the snow.
As for Mary Johnson, she shovels because it needs to be done.
"We got elderly [neighbors], so we shovel them too. We go to their doors and knock, and if they don't have anyone... it's just from the kindness of our heart," said Johnson.
Now if only everyone could try helping out their neighbors, there's be no one left walking in the street.
Or Mary could find the owners of the vacant properties and send them a bill for clearing their properties.