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Old 01-31-2014, 07:02 AM
 
Location: 3.5 sq mile island ant nest next to Canada
3,021 posts, read 5,020,442 times
Reputation: 2140

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You can blame it on sprawl or government or forecasters; I believe it's each individual driver/worker who lwent out that day in Atlanta. There was warnings and folks know they are not geared up for extreme winter driving. I knew about this storm coming the day before it happened and told my wife I was glad we didn't live there anymore. I knew it would be a mess.

The majority should have called in sick or just said they would be out. Hospital staff I could see going in but business, executives, financiers? To be honest, the world would not end if they miss a day or two. But common sense seems to be lacking. Don't get me wrong; it happens here too. It's snowing to beat he77 but people need to drive to Walmart 30 miles up the road. Heck, I've done it some myself ;out when I shoulda been in. Folks usually claim that they have 4WD and will be ok. That only helps get you going; not maneuver or stop. Sorry for the rant but lack of common sense, as I see it, aggravates me.
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Old 01-31-2014, 08:11 AM
 
3,836 posts, read 4,715,010 times
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2 inches of snow is not extreme weather - nor unheard of in Atlanta. The problem was Atlanta's complete dependence on a few corridors - once they shut down, there were zero options and the system collapsed.

A true network of streets is resilient. Shutting down one or two doesn't choke the system.

How an Urban Grid Prevents Atlanta

"But there’s a problem with funneling. When the funnel clogs, it reduces the number of alternate routes, causing a “traffic heart attack.” Think of how you can get around in Chicago—if someone wipes out and blocks an entire major artery, there are multiple routes to another one, usually in three or four directions."
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Old 01-31-2014, 08:26 AM
 
Location: Philaburbia
32,376 posts, read 59,827,196 times
Reputation: 54019
Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
In any area where snow and ice are rare, such as most of the American south, there is going to be a lot of disruption when those conditions develop. The reason is simple: Where snow and ice are rare, the locality is not equipped to cope with same! It's fascinating how the anti-car fanatics seize on anything and everything to demonize "sprawl", which they apparently consider a dirty word.
Precisely.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jade408 View Post
Let use not forget ATL is the place where a drunk driver killed a kid who was crossing the street and the mother was jailed.
Oh, yeah, that's relevant ...
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Old 01-31-2014, 08:42 AM
 
358 posts, read 359,870 times
Reputation: 306
Yes, this whole mess certainly happened because of sprawl. There is no street grid in Atlanta. Everyone is funneled into a limited amount of highways to get anywhere. Compare that to a city like Chicago, where there are tons of north-south and east-west streets that can get you anywhere in the metro area.

Also, do people in Atlanta not have all-weather tires? I keep hearing the "tire excuse". All-weather tires work fine here in Wisconsin. I've never owned snow tires.
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Old 01-31-2014, 08:46 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 18 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,999 posts, read 102,581,357 times
Reputation: 33059
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnhw2 View Post
Was the issue the snow or the ice? Ice is a completely different animal which northern claim ages are not as familiar. Why did everyone leave work early at the same time? PPP
Not sure I completely understand that sentence in bold, but if you're saying that northerners aren't familiar with ice, you're incorrect. Even in MN it gets above freezing once in a while, and snow melts, then refreezes.

However, I'm willing to give Atlanta a bit of a pass, as I agree with this:

Quote:
In any area where snow and ice are rare, such as most of the American south, there is going to be a lot of disruption when those conditions develop. The reason is simple: Where snow and ice are rare, the locality is not equipped to cope with same! It's fascinating how the anti-car fanatics seize on anything and everything to demonize "sprawl", which they apparently consider a dirty word.
I have less sympathy for DC when it snows, as it happens every winter, and way outside of the Beltway in CO we hear about how bad they have it. That should not happen in the nation's capital.
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:29 AM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
33,884 posts, read 42,114,647 times
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Just as an aside, Washington, DC (metro DC actually) is known for shutting down during cold weather events. That includes the Metro train and bus systems. To expect Atlanta, faced with an almost 1000 year event, to be prepared like northern states, to have the equipment and supplies (de-icers) necessary to manage the event and not shutdown is ludicrous.

PA, which is certainly no stranger to winter weather, closed Interstate 80, for its entire length, for a day last week and had lowered speed limits after that for a couple days. Why? The road couldn't be cleared with the equipment available.
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Old 01-31-2014, 10:24 AM
 
2,941 posts, read 3,858,676 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Not sure I completely understand that sentence in bold, but if you're saying that northerners aren't familiar with ice, you're incorrect. Even in MN it gets above freezing once in a while, and snow melts, then refreezes.
.
I think he means that ICE is by far more dangerous than snow. Snow you kind of drive through slowly but ICE ugh walking and driving are both extremely dangerous.

As for tires I suspect that summer tires may be more popular there along with cars less able to deal with snow(rear wheel drive sports cars).
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Duluth, GA
1,253 posts, read 990,570 times
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Those pointing out that Georgia [not just Atlanta] does not have the kind of equipment to deal with winter weather events because they are rare have it right; The last time it did this was 3 years ago. And, to be clear, snow is only part of it. Ice-covered hills were major deterrents to getting anywhere.

But not as much as the jack-knifed trucks in front of you.

Yes, there were weather warnings. Two days before, most forecasts put this storm mostly south of Atlanta [to which my wife would pout for lack of snow at our house]. Forecasts change, though, as conditions ahead of weather systems change [aside: I experienced this earlier this winter when driving up to CT on Christmas Eve, where it was forecast to be clear, yet I found myself in white-out conditions on the Merritt Pkwy]. A winter weather watch became an advisory, then became a warning.

So, school systems in the metro area still opened their doors Tuesday morning. Then, some time around noon, when the snow started really falling, school districts decided to send kids home. "Parents, come pick up your kids", went out about 15 minutes before untreated roads started to become slick with ice and packed snow. Tractor-trailers jack-knifed across multiple lanes and on many exit ramps [which gets kind of downplayed, but this did happen quite a bit]. And we all know by now what the result was.

Gwinnett County schools did not close early, and the traffic on that side of town never got as bad as it did around the perimeter [I-285].
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Old 01-31-2014, 11:32 AM
Status: "Summer!" (set 18 days ago)
 
Location: Foot of the Rockies
86,999 posts, read 102,581,357 times
Reputation: 33059
Quote:
Originally Posted by chirack View Post
I think he means that ICE is by far more dangerous than snow. Snow you kind of drive through slowly but ICE ugh walking and driving are both extremely dangerous.

As for tires I suspect that summer tires may be more popular there along with cars less able to deal with snow(rear wheel drive sports cars).
Re: ice-See these two posts of mine from another thread on the same subject:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
It depends on how much snow. Regarding ice, a couple of points: 1) As I said above, we do get ice up north. Most everywhere has "freeze/thaw" cycles. The snow melts during the day and freezes again at night. Here in metro Denver, where it can be 62 one day and snowing the next, like a day last week, the precip may start as rain and then freeze. OR, it can start as snow and melt when it hits the ground, then freeze as temps drop and the road cools off. 2) Driving on the snow packs it down, melts it a bit, and ice is formed that way. It is incorrect to say that we don't get ice "up north". I saw a story on TV about "black ice" in MN.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Katiana View Post
Calm down. I'm just pointing out that ice is a problem in northern climates, as well. And 1/4 inch is just as slippery as 4". I slipped on the ice on my street one winter day and got a concussion. It was no more than 1/2", probably less. It was ice that had accumulated by the curb. That's another situation "up north".
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Old 01-31-2014, 12:33 PM
 
Location: NE Mississippi
13,655 posts, read 8,573,131 times
Reputation: 19863
Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnhw2 View Post
Was the issue the snow or the ice? Ice is a completely different animal which northern claim ages are not as familiar.......
Ice.
I logged over 2 million miles before I retired, and drove all over 49 states.
The worst conditions I have ever encountered were in Atlanta years ago because of the ice. Snow had little to do with it.

I was sitting at the bottom of a small incline. I put the car in gear and the wheels began to spin. No point in adding gas to it. There simply was no traction available. Got out and could not even walk.
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