By DOUGLAS W. MOTLEY – Senior Writer
Snow removal crews have been working day and night to stay on top of road clearance throughout the mountaintop communities since beginning their Herculean effort at the end of February. San Bernardino County Department of Public Works spokesman Angel Arreola explained that, with more than 100 pieces of snow removal equipment deployed in the mountain communities, crews would be continuing their road clearance by widening lanes so that vehicles can more easily pass one another.
As of Monday, April 3, most, if not all, public thoroughfares had been plowed one or more times, even those in the toughest-to-serve areas, for a total of 516 miles. Following a five-week-long siege of continuing rain and snowstorms, since the record-breaking blizzard at the end of February, more than seven feet of snow had accumulated in the townships of Cedarpines Park, Crestline, Lake Arrowhead and Running Springs. Many local residents are truly grateful for what was indeed a Herculean and successful effort by County Road crews. Some, however, still complain about snow and ice berms left by snowplows at the bottom of their driveways.
According to Arreola, county snowplow operators push the snow off the roadway in smooth, continuous passes from the center of the road to the edge of the right-of-way; the snow ends up on the road shoulders, sometimes blocking driveways.
“In making as many roads passable to the community as a whole and as quickly as possible, there is no way to avoid berms,” Arreola said. “As part of the blizzard disaster, we assembled a list of residents who had reported large berms from the opening of the roads. The residents can either hire their own contractor to remove snow berms and driveways and seek reimbursement through the Snow Removal Reimbursement Program, or Public Works can add them to our list for consideration.
“Currently,” Arreola continued, “we have a contractor removing some large berms from the blizzard event only at reported locations. The locations were determined by requests received through the call center and related to the blizzard.”
Arreola added that the work should be completed next week and that residents who have the larger berms from the blizzard event (typically over five feet in height) can email Public Works for consideration for the Snow Removal Reimbursement Program (https://snowinfo.sbcounty.gov/reimbursement-program).
Another problem that has mountain motorists driving as though they are on a slalom course is the enormous number of potholes, some as deep as eight to 10 inches, on both state and county-maintained roads. These potholes pose a real danger to motorists who have to swerve around them in order to prevent a flat tire or bent rim or, even worse, a broken axel.
Noting that potholes would be evaluated and taken care of by a DPW Operations crew, Arreola said, “Residents may submit requests for pothole repairs on the SeeClickFix app or online at https://dpw.sbcounty.gov/operations/see-click-fix.