Where Are The Plows? Officials Say Conditions Make Clearing City Streets Difficult

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Where are the plows? It’s a question many people are asking.

Driving is treacherous, many city streets remain unplowed or waited hours to see them.

It was the kind of storm in which sanitation plows have a tough time catching a break.

As CBS2’s Marcia Kramer drove around Manhattan, she was surprised at the number of streets that have not been plowed.

The unplowed streets made it difficult for emergency vehicles to get through, and for drivers it was like a chorus of Paul Simon’s ‘Slip Slidin Away.’

“Last year was better, the plowing was better, the salting was better, but not today. Today is just not good,” Badu Cisse said.

“It’s very bad. Sometimes I have to put the traction off because I cannot get out,” Lucas Klusicvk said.

On street after street on the East Side of Manhattan drivers were doing something that looked like self-plowing — hoping that the weight of their cars would melt some of the snow.

It was especially bad outside Governor Cuomo’s office on Third Ave and 40th Street.

There was one consolation for Cuomo; city plows may have had a hard time reaching him, but owners of the building his office is located in had a small plow clearing his sidewalk so he could reach his car without much trouble.

“I get paid, I have no choice,” the plow operator said, “We have to keep up the building.”

Cuomo explained why this storm made plowing harder.

“The wind compounds the problem,” he said. “It’s almost impossible to clear the roads when you have those high wind gusts because when you clean the road the wind literally brings the snow back.”

That’s what happened on Madison Ave in the 90s. A convoy of plows cleared the street, a few minutes later the snow was back.

The mayor admitted conditions are difficult, and that the cold would make salting tough as well.

“Do not expect immediate improvement,” de Blasio said.

“If we don’t see blacktop by the time the temperature starts to fall tonight you’re not going to see it til Monday,” Sanitation Commissioner, Katherine Garcia said.

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