Friday, February 4, 2011

Massive Ice Storm Roars Through Houston! City Paralyzed!

Ok, maybe not massive. And it really didn't roar. But it certainly paralyzed the city. Wondering why?

Houston is a city of many overpasses. There are multiple reasons for this. First, everyone (well, a lot of people) lives in the 'burbs, so they have to travel into town from long distances. By long I mean long. 15, 20, 30, 40 miles, just to get to work, school, what-have-you. Long commutes mean freeways, or at least busy roads. Houston has a lot of freeways. The freeways intersect a lot of other streets (and some other freeways). Overpasses supposedly move traffic better because then you have less signals where roads intersect. Plus they don't flood, which is important here in the Bayou City. But overpasses ice up in wintry weather. Now of course we don't have much in the way of wintry weather. At least not often. But when we do, all those overpasses freeze up and you get sort of a bumper car effect when folks venture out. The city tries to keep up with sand and gravel and de-icing, but in the end it doesn't spread far or wide enough, and people still insist on driving, and then TXDOT has to close roads. Most of the freeways around here are partially, if not totally shut down at this point.

One of the headlines for the online version of the local paper is reporting at least 100 wrecks in a four hour period for the county. Sheesh people! Is it really that important that you gotta go out? I, and my friends, are reporting (from our spots in front of our computers in our warm houses) that we are hearing lots of sirens and emergency vehicles.

School for today was canceled yesterday. Work is supposed to crank up at 10:00 a.m. for a delayed start, but I'm not sure that is going to happen on time. Of course it doesn't matter to me since I have the kids anyway. So the plan is to just stay indoors and try and quell the disappointment about no snow.

But I ventured out for a few pics. It was cold. My hands were shaky because of it. Blllurrrr. Oh, and brrr.

Now, if everyone would please log off of Groupon so I can purchase the deal-of-the-day.

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