Recollection recently in late January pointed to snow storms survived in our northern Illinois area.
Snow banks as high as six-feet or more to obscure a tall person walking down the street was a memory of the January 1979 snow storm.
The worst storm of all time in northern Illinois, according to first-person accounts and historical data pointed to the January 26-27, 1967, snow fall of more than 23 inches which strangled society. Rear-wheel drive cars required constant pushing from the perils of being stuck in slippery situations. Ah, memories.
More recently the February 1, 2011 snow storm required plows and strategy of planners to be more than equal to the situation.
Old-timers in northern Illinois would recall the January 1936 snow storm which reduced two-lane highways to one lane to move to another town or another location.
Surviving the worst storms gain legendary status. Better planning, prompt snow removal, and preparedness all equip municipalities to handle the situation. Because of Doppler radar communities can utilize better forecasts to take action.
The 1967 storm in late January was preceded by 50 degree weather by only a few days. Better forecasting would have prevented the chaos that prevailed on highways and community streets.
The forecasts for this week’s dire snow and even more the frigid blast, the polar vortex, allowed for better planning.
It might be better to say that the vast majority of events were postponed or canceled rather than recite which events were put on hold. There was no mail delivery Wednesday, Jan. 30 such were the dire warnings for being outside for any time at all, much less than to allow exposed skin to linger in cold.
Many school districts took two and three days off this week, rather than risk serious problems with road situations or exposure to the arctic blasts. The school time can be made up in June and bad situations can be prevented. Life goes on, is the philosophical view. Even the production of The Voice was halted Wednesday by the printing company in deference to Mother Nature and to the forces which produce an inability to function. Think cars not starting, personnel not functioning, and a shutdown (shudder at the term) of progress.
What we learn is that we can take a detour, prevail in the situation, and keep up with our functions. Soon it will be balmy, 80 degrees, and the frigid experience will be a distant memory. This too shall pass.
We must not forget, however, to acknowledge those who were involved in helping to resolve our situation, both volunteers and those in a work endeavor. See photo of Aurora firemen containing a blaze Tuesday in frigid temperatures well below zero (click here). Those who command snow plows work extra hours. Neighbors help neighbors. We must be thankful.