What A Winter!

This winter has been a tough one not only in the Frostburg community, but also all over Maryland and the most of the east coast. Since December, this region saw a large accumulative amount of snow that just makes the people ready for the spring and summer weather. Not only has the snow affected the schools and the communities, but they have affected the snowplow companies too.

As the region has dealt with the impacts of each snowstorm this winter, all agencies are dealing with far over their snow removal budgets for this winter. Maryland’s State Highway Administration, also known as SHA, has spent $123 million statewide on snow removal, even though they had a budget that was only $46 million. SHA has averaged only about $70 million that was spent on snow removal each of the past five years, so this winter has definitely been above the norm. Western Maryland has had a much more of a rough winter than the D.C/Baltimore metro areas with about 181 inches of snow (15 feet) since this past Tuesday, March 4.

The high number of snowstorms over this winter has caused a lot of salt impact across the region.  Allegany County prepared for Maryland’s most recent storm this past week by obtaining 200 tons of salt from the Maryland SHA. The county had already depleted its salt reserves for the winter.

Allegany County is used to this type of winter though and has experienced  harsh wind and snow many times. About 700 tons of salt are ordered for Allegany county every year. The same amount of salt is applied on roads, whether it is a big storm or only a couple inches of snow. The state currently has 250,000 tons of salt but the budget has sufficed and has caused the state millions of dollars more.

An off-campus resident, Brenden Williams is tired of the winter and the snow that has fallen many of times throughout this winter. He said, “It has been a tough struggle especially living off campus to travel when there is always snow on the ground.”

Many off-campus residents and even on-campus students are tired of snow, especially with the tons of salt on the ground.

“It is hard to actually look decent and wear what you want to wear to class because shoes and clothes are bound to get ruined because the salt that is on the ground,” Brenden also stated about this winter’s problems. He has been here since Fall 2010 and he said that this is probably the worst winter that he has encountered here at FSU because of the snow.

He also said, “The snowplows always do there jobs, but because I live off campus, they don’t really focus on the street that I live on. They tend to focus more on students who live more closer to campus, which is bad for me because I do like to drive my car around often.”

This winter has definitely been a tough one for Frostburg State University students with not only the snow, but the cancellations of classes. The region has exceeded their budget with snow removal and can only hope that there would be no more major snowfall. With the long winter this region has experienced, spring is definitely coming soon!


Featured Image: During this winter, snow plows are a commonality in Frostburg State University. (Derrick Coetzee/ Flickr)

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