A thankless job

In the “there’s only so much a person can do” category, I’d like to issue a THANKS to our area road crews. In this man’s humble opinion, they do a great job at treating our roadways.

Many of you out there disagree with that statement, I’m sure. And yes, many times there are several roads, streets, alleys, lanes, avenues, boulevards and highways that will be bad and possibly untreated.

Weather happens.

I understand everyone believes his or her street is the most important roadway on this planet we call Earth, but unless you live on one of the area’s main arteries, guess what? . . . it’s not.

Every road department, whether it’s a township, village, city, county or state, has a plan. They just don’t hop in a truck and hit the first road they find.

There is a system in which roads are maintained – the most important to, well, honestly, the least. The majority trumps the minority – meaning if a road is well-traveled by the masses it takes precedent over the lane that serves as a short cut for you to get from point A to point B.

They’ll get to you, but it may take time. There are unforeseen variables, after all, such as accumulation and equipment failure.

The Review has an online poll asking “rate your community as it pertains to road maintenance in the winter months” and provides four options: excellent, good, fair and poor.

As of late-morning Thursday, 598 online users had taken part, and the majority – 308 votes or 52 percent – opted for “poor.”

That was expected, to be honest.

Fair came in at 21 percent, followed by good at 16 percent and excellent at 12 percent.

The four comments left were a mixed bag.

Nichalos said “State Route 39 has been spotless and no complaints,” adding that although the drive on 39 was “no problem,” there was trouble “when I hit 7 and then 11 they were horrible.”

Officials in Chester have a fan in readingthis1, who said the city “has always done a good job.”

Apparently ohkid55 has had trouble in the past, saying “Here on Lisbon street its good, but terrible on your mailbox … they take it out!”

And finally, cwdancer appears conflicted as to an opinion, writing “It depends, if there is school they are cleaned early, if not or it’s the weekend, they get done sometime that day.”

The road crews never will make everyone happen, and there are times I’m none too pleased, but for the most part they do an admirable job.

Perhaps there’s times we shouldn’t even be out on the roads based on the conditions. Who’s to blame in those instances?

Back in the day, I hated to see a plow hit 6th Avenue in LaCroft because I wanted to use the hill as my own personal sled riding course. Now, I want that road treated because I understand the dangers of driving a vehicle in wintry conditions.

And you know what? It is. Perhaps not immediately, but it gets done.

What needs preached is patience. Crews will get to your area. In time.

If not, break out that old runner sled and take advantage.

(Jim Mackey is managing editor of The Review. Reach him at jmackey@reviewonline.com)