KC city manager’s tweet prompts residents to take snow matters into their own hands

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Since Sunday’s storm, many metro roads are still snow covered, making it very difficult to get around. The icy roads forced Kansas City Public Schools, as well as other districts, to close for the third day in a row

Kansas City, Missouri is a big city with 6,400-lane miles to cover in the 320-square mile city. Some people who are sick of waiting for the city to clear the streets are taking matters into their own hands.

“We basically decided screw the city and we are going to do what we have to do to get these roads cleared,” resident LaTisha Marek said.

After three days of watching cars slide out of control down her ice-covered street, Marek and her friends decided to start chipping away at the job she said Kansas City is supposed to do.

“We had to push three different vehicles out of the ditch from getting stuck and one of them was my fiancée.” Marek said.

The Kansas City North resident said she called the city’s 311 line several times asking for a plow to come down North Lane Avenue near Northeast Vivion Road, with no response. It was the last call that prompted her to pick up a shovel and do it herself.

“And then about an hour later I had noticed on Facebook where people were talking about how Kansas City had completely halted snow and ice removal from all of the roadways because they said all streets were cleared.”

Marek is referring to this tweet from City Manager Troy Schulte:

“What he meant was we are going to switch tactics,” Kansas City Spokesperson Chris Hernandez said. “Instead of just sending the drivers out to their established routes, we are going to send the trucks directly to those problem areas.”

The city’s full fleet of 70 plows is now concentrating on neighborhood streets, which have the most ice build-up and is the issue for buses, causing school closures. It was a storm that has been especially problematic, but don’t blame the city, blame Mother Nature.

“The way the storm moved in with that layer of rain first and we were not able to pre-treat because it would have been washed away,” Hernandez said. “Then the big blizzard that dumped six inches of snow in one afternoon. That caused a snow pack and that is what we have been digging through for all of these days and we are going to continue to do it today and tomorrow and the day after that.”

Marek and her friends will continue as well, afraid that the freezing temperatures overnight will just make matters worse on their unattended to sheet of ice. She says she doesn’t think they can get the entire road cleared but are doing their best to help.

“We figure they have got a place to try to catch their tires on to then it will at least help them get the rest of the way down the road,” she said.

The city is making a list of remaining problem areas. If you know of a dangerous area that needs attention, you can report it by calling 311.

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