The other day we got our annual snowfall. I really have no idea how much it was because we barely got a skiff of snow. Of course now its rather cold out, but clear – which is nice (except that my car desperately needs a carwash and I can’t do that until it warms up a bit or the locks will freeze).
A few things about the weather in Lotusland:
1. We’re never satisfied. Its either raining too much, or its too cold or its too hot. Or its too humid. Or its too [insert word of choice here].
2. We don’t know how to drive in the snow. Most of us run around all year on all-season radials expecting them to take care of us. Then we’re shocked when they don’t in the snow.
This is a pet peeve of mine. I have two sets of tires because I live at the mouth of the Fraser Valley. Both have their own sets of rims so its really just a matter of getting the all-seasons swapped out for the snows in October/November (usually thanksgiving).
BUY A SET OF WINTER TIRES FOR YOUR CAR ALREADY. Then you won’t be stranded when transit isn’t running because of the snow. According to the local news, on Saturday there were 44 accidents around Lotusland – there are normally about 3.
3. Transit in the snow here sucks. Last year sometime, transit up to Simon Fraser University stopped before the university shut down for snowfall. People were stranded. On Saturday night, transit basically stopped serving the downtown core.
Drivers were told to avoid driving if conditions were too dangerous; many just parked their buses and went home. But don’t go blaming the drivers, folks. According to one comment on that article I linked above there: “Yes the drivers are struggling with not only shortages of buses, service and support in normal weather, but bald and rain tread tires which give no traction whatsoever in icy and snowy conditions! Hence the clear directive from company to park the vehicles, and the decisions by responsible drivers to stop/wait for plowing, salting and sanding to meet safe driving standards.” [emphasis mine]
Let’s rephrase that: TransLink is refusing to supply winter tires for its buses. Not economically responsible you know, since we’ll only need them once or twice a year.
I’ve written about my beefs with TransLink before. Of course, my biggest issue is that its a private board that’s deciding how to spend my tax dollars – Lotusland residents have NO SAY in how its spent, what kind of service they get and when.
What it boils down to: take some responsibility for yourselves, people. I know its a sucky time of year to possibly miss out on a day’s pay, but a lot of the time its safer to stay home if you’re not prepared for the weather than to go out.
In the meantime, some pointers:
- get some snow tires for your car, if you have a car. They may save your life.
- Get some appropriate boots/shoes for walking. If you must, get something like yaktrax to make sure you don’t slip and hurt yourselves on icy sidewalks.
- Shovel your sidewalk if you have one. Its your responsibility.
- Dress appropriately; don’t expect roads to be plowed and transit to be running. Be ready to walk if you have to: coat, hat, gloves, scarf layers, warm boots.
- Bring an extra pair of socks along – they may get wet.
Anywhere else in Canada seems to get this. Lotusland, on the other hand, seems kind of special.
Now you’ll excuse me while I get ready to face the day with my hat, gloves, coat, scarf, snow tires and dress shoes in a bag.