Blocked storm drains and the worst weather
Every winter there is one day where the weather is just beyond awful. Most of the time from November-April it can be unpleasantly + cold OR windy OR wet OR icy OR slippery, or at most two of those at the same time. But there’s always that one day where it is all of those things. We hit that day on a recent Saturday: just below freezing, extremely windy, piles of snow on the ground, an established inches-thick layer of ice everywhere, and RAINING. It was horrible. We took one look at the forecast and immediately packed up the kids and went to one of those huge indoor play areas for the day (do you have those huge indoor play areas? They are amazing).
In the meantime, there was a problem on our little lane: the storm drains were frozen over and the falling rain was accumulating fast. The entire pedestrian walkway became a huge puddle with a few inches of rainwater over a few inches of ice, with nowhere to drain. On the Sunday after the Horrible Weather Saturday, the neighbors took turns trying to hack through the ice to get to the storm drain.
I counted eight people using seven different tools in the attempts to free the storm drain from the ice. We had shovels, rebar, a crowbar, and kettles of boiling water being used alternately, even as we looked up photos of the lane from last summer, trying to determine exactly where the drain was. In the end, our neighbor who is also a fireman calmly walked out with a metal detector (I mean, who DOESN’T have one of those?!?) and located the storm drains all along the lane and the motley tools were able to take care of the rest.
And yes, it was hugely satisfying to hear and see that huge frigid puddle go down the drain, taking the dregs of the most horrible weather day of the year along with it.