Yes, the snow is causing a bit of chaos in Dorchester, but how about praise where praise is due?

Profile image for alfiebass

By alfiebass | Thursday, December 23, 2010, 10:07

As the pavements in Dorchester continue to be lethal and side roads treacherous today, there are calls for more gritters.

The local media reports 'anger' that the county council isn't doing enough to sort out the 'snow chaos'.

The Highways Agency is responsible for the A35, the main artery that runs through Dorset, and the county council is responsible for the rest - all 2,500 miles of it, so some bits have to be left out.

But you'd think all this bad weather is actually the county council's fault. The way the papers report it, it's as if the chief executive is sitting on a cloud chucking down the snow while the gritting crews are sitting around doing nothing apart from saying: 'I'd be careful on that ice if I were you, love.'

These people are working really hard - but where are the vox pops with them? Where are the stories about people battling into work to man vital services? Where are the stories about communities rallying round and looking after neighbours?

The snow chaos story is easy - and lazy.

Pub talk is: "Why can't we be more like other countries and geared up for it?"

And the press - both local and national- repeat the ill-informed mantra, without actually thinking it through.

All we get is one long whinge. It's more boring than the snow.

It's extreme weather, for goodness sake, of course we're not geared up for it. If we want all the roads gritted, then we will just have to pay more through our council tax for more equipment, staff and grit.

I read a great blog post about this just the other day - what do you think?



  • Profile image for Silverdoller3

    I would agree it was nature that causes some mixed feelings about the snow. It makes the place feel Christmassy and looks all pretty like a postcard but no! griping does not change the problems faced when the snow became a bone breaking death trap because it was not cleared from the pavements.
    I don’t think you’re being fully fair Stanley when you obviously never faced the prospect of being house bound by snow, when you’re elderly and have to weigh up the odds of either a broken hip (weeks in hospital, the prospect of developing complications and not surviving. This is not an exaggeration) or having food by going to the local shop.
    I know we are a nation of compainers now, but isn't it because we are facing cutbacks after cutback when it comes to our services?
    road sweepers used to clear the snow when we had them, as they also cleared drains, water channels and hedges by the road. they were responsible for thier square footage of road.
    Nature hasn't changed we have.

    By Silverdoller3 at 02:44 on 31/12/10

  • Profile image for cernem1alt

    When I was a boy (1960's) if we had snow all the road sweepers and dustmen were put on pavement snow clearing duty.

    By cernem1alt at 11:43 on 23/12/10

  • Profile image for FlatStanley

    It's funny, Oliver Letwin MP was saying much the same in his column in the Western Gazette this week: 'For reasons that I don't quite understand, there seems to be a general rule that bad news is always news and that good news is never news.'
    He suggests we should focus of the good just as much on the bad in the new year, making it one of our new year's resolutions.
    This whole whinge over the snow and blaming everyone but nature for it and its effects made me think about what might happen in World War III. Would there be a Blitz spirit, or would we all be complaining?
    Yes, it's a shame, lots of plans are disrupted, but that's life, that's nature. Have we been hit by a tsnuami, an earthquake or volcanic eruption? No. So let's make the most of it, help those who need our help and quite complaining.

    By FlatStanley at 11:29 on 23/12/10

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