Rate Marblehead's Plowing During the Blizzard of 2013

Are you satisfied or frustrated with how the town handled the area’s fifth largest snowstorm in history? Let us know by posting a comment below.

Now that the snow has fallen, and started to melt, it’s your time to rate how Marblehead's plows handled the nearly two feet of snow that fell Friday and Saturday.

On a scale from one to ten, feel free to give praise or thanks, express frustrations or offer up constructive criticism in the comments below.

The blizzard dumped 23 inches of snow on Marblehead, according to a trained observer cited by the National Weather Service.

When you're doling out your rating, keep in mind the challenge those plow drivers faced: The blizzard is expected to rank among the top five worst Boston-area storms since records have been kept.

Barry Hater February 12, 2013 at 10:54 AM
Chris, the same terms require use of real names. Are SOME of the rules more important than others?
John H February 12, 2013 at 12:23 PM
Let's get back on topic... the poor plowing. Even now, Tuesday morning, a full three days after the storm, people are getting stuck in the snow on Bessom St. And the Roundhill parking area is almost impassable.
Reasoning February 12, 2013 at 12:36 PM
John H - Time for you to get out of your jammies and take a look at Besson St and Roundhouse Rd. Down to pavement and a front end loader cleared the road back to the curb overnight and yes, they did removed the mess created by Gilbert & Cole and other buisness' in the area. Would you rather the Highway dept waste their time plowing out private vehicles on Roundhouse Rd or clearing the streets and sidewalks around the schools? Roundhouse Rd is low on the priority scale. I bet less then 1% of the people have even driven down that road in the past 5 years. Think it's time the town made that area a 'no overnight parking' zone.
John H February 12, 2013 at 12:51 PM
As a mater of fact, I did just get out my jammies... To go help an old man get his truck off off a snow bank on the corner of Bessom and Pleasant St. Then I went down to Roundhill and helped some other people get out. I'm doing my part to help out in a bad situation. Not just attacking others people personally for their critique of the DPW response.
Reasoning February 12, 2013 at 01:52 PM
At the corner of Besson and Pleasant St stuck in a snow bank? Was the truck stuck becasue of poor plowing or did the 'Old man' as you say run off the road into the snowbank? I'm sure he appreciated your help as well as the people on Roundhouse Rd getting their private vehicles out of public parking spaces.
Chris Helms (Editor) February 12, 2013 at 01:54 PM
Hi Barry Hater, thanks for asking. We do give individual Patch editors some leeway in enforcing the terms. For instance, we have some sites that keep as strictly as possible to the "real names" rule. That's never been the culture for Marblehead Patch, since the debates here by and large stay pretty civil even with the fake names.
Pat February 12, 2013 at 02:42 PM
How many of you people complaing about the job they did could sit and drive a plow truck for 35 hrs strait. Most of the dpw workers barely even got coffe breaks. This was a long crazy storm and theres alot of factors that come i to play. A thank you would be nice. We did the best we could, no need to put is down most of us barlely can carch up on sleep and have been out working doing snow removal every night.
John Buba February 12, 2013 at 02:53 PM
You of course are correct - you did you best, but the results were less than satisfactory and other towns somehow succeeded. We are looking for the root cause. The goal is not to work people longer or harder. Maybe we needed bigger plows or more people. The goal is to find out and give the town workers the best opportunity to succeed.
Pat February 12, 2013 at 03:19 PM
Bottom line this was a huge storm lots of snow and wind, creating snowdrifts filling the st as soon as u drove down them. Basically impossible to keep ip with bu the way the duration of the noght you couldnt see the front of the truck, and bozos were out walking around and playing in the snow. How can u justify spending millions of dollars on equipment that would it be ised ever few years when a freak storm comes theough. Sry your weekend got inconvineced but you should just deal with it, if all your worried about is a wasted weekend and a poor plow job in 27 inch storm then life is good. Why dont you relax and not criticize re peoe that were working hard to clear the roads for ungrateful people like yourself. To all of you grateful and polite people thank you for cooperating and being all in all just nice people
John Buba February 12, 2013 at 03:45 PM
Pat, Can you use your full name? If Salem and Swampscott can justify the funds for trucks so can we. However in Marblehead we seem to be more focused on providing raises than proper equipment. Your justification that you did a” decent” job and so what if the citizens were inconvenienced is an attitude that we cannot afford in our public employees or contractors. There was once a time when cities and towns were proud of their snow removal efforts and each town tried to be the BEST.
John H February 12, 2013 at 04:30 PM
Undoubtedly, the challenges presented by a storm of this magnitude are/were more then the MHD DPW could be expected to handle without any short-comings occurring. The point of Chris Helms blog thread was to "give praise or thanks, express frustrations or offer up constructive criticism". I want to make clear that I am thankful to all the MHD DPW workers that have spent many hours responding to this historic event. Their task is/was to make the roads and sidewalks clear, for the rest of us to carry on with our lives, and for the most part they have succeeded. Unfortunately, there have been some failures too and this public forum is one way to to make these know... so as to provide for possible improvement in the future. Expressing frustrations with the results effecting me and my neighbors, and bringing attention to a particular area of town, should not detract from the overall results. Nor should it open me, and others, up for whatever hateful comments come to small minds that have access to a computer. Sadly, a few have chosen to make personal attacks on anyone not completely satisfied, rather then offer constructive criticism of their own. Yet another sad commentary on American society in general.
Pat February 12, 2013 at 04:35 PM
Haha why does it matter my last name matter? By the way bubba seems like an alias,I got nothing to hide my last names sylvester and i plowed broughton rd to rose ave and put forth my best effort.. And i dont think we did a decent job i know everyone i work with put in 100 % effort i know i did. Its frustrating to hear you complain so much. Thats clearly why your being picked on or singled out. By the way swampscott does not have better equipment. How do u know what town has what for equipment. Just think your rude all of the dpw workers have been working countless hours to try and fix this giant mess, and people like you just seem ilin appreciative of everyting. Ive talked to people in salem and swampscott and they all had the same problems on there side roads. Only the main roads were taken care of. My friend in salem was stuck on there st untill sunday night untouched. Theres small roads forgotten in all towns and cities. Your just being overcritical. Its easy to point your finger why dont you try and approach this problem with an open mind rather then how ypu were inconvienced durring one of the 5 biggest storms weve seen. Your entitled to your opinion same as i am i dont have to agree with it and vice versa
Brutally Honest February 12, 2013 at 04:38 PM
Pat, completely agree with you! Bubba, Respectfully, the big issue with this storm was the ability to move snow, not just plow it. In the past, the town was able to legally dump the snow into the harbor, or use dump trucks to put it at the beaches. With the environmental hippies now, both of those practices will get the town employees crucified, and all the pissy complainers in this town pissed off. they always need something to bitch about. If you go to Beverly or Manchester, the state plows and snow removal teams moved the snow to the beaches (legally or illegally, not sure which), which allowed for wider streets and fewer issues. This storm left us with snow and nowhere to put it. You just need to deal, or try and change the laws.
Pat February 12, 2013 at 04:39 PM
Im all for constructive criticisim, and thank you for appreciation jon H. If someone has a suggestion how to improve ill do what i can. Im just standing ip for my co workers who have been doing the best they can. Not my intentions to be rude if it comes off that way i apologize.
Peter Blaisdell February 12, 2013 at 04:46 PM
Pat, I know you and your co-workers busted your butts during this storm. As you are on the front-lines, are there any opportunities for improvement that you see? I've heard people walking in the streets was a problem? Someone else said cars parked on the street. Also private plows making a mess of things. Was it just a case of too much snow and not enough trucks, drivers, and time to deal with it all? What about new rules for handling snow? Was it easier to deal with when you used to be able to drop it all in the harbor? Is there still a ban on that? Please help us understand. All I saw and all I know is that my street was a mess and was plowed only once Saturday morning before the snow stopped and then not again until Monday some time while I was at work. I know nothing else about the process, how many trucks were used, or what the challenges were.
Peter Blaisdell February 12, 2013 at 04:48 PM
Agree with Brutally Honest. Never understood how dumping snow in the harbor was any different than letting it melt and go down the storm drain into the harbor.
Barnegat bred February 12, 2013 at 04:56 PM
Barnegat born: Where are all of the "good feelings" of the joy of being able to live in such a beautiful, seaside community where people all come together during "record breaking" storms like the one we just had. What an entitled buch of people some of you have become. Don't know who you would complain to if we had received the amount of destruction some of our other americans have recently been through. The employees of this town are the ONLY people who remove the snow here in M'head. We do not have any state or publically contracted contractors to remove (and or)MOVE all of the snow that we received. It may only take a few hours to accumulate but it takes many, many, more manpower hours to clear and deposit elsewhere. I for one, am not only grateful for the employees hard work during such a tremendous storm, but am also "thankful" that there are still a few residents who do truly understand the enormity of this storm and the reprecussions of plowing in a town who has many difficult areas to keep passable. If so many of you are unhappy with what was able to be done during this storm, you know where the town line is feel free to go elsewhere. It will be your loss, not this towns'.
Pat February 12, 2013 at 05:07 PM
Im all for constructive criticisim, and thank you for appreciation jon H. If someone has a suggestion how to improve ill do what i can. Im just standing ip for my co workers who have been doing the best they can. Not my intentions to be rude if it comes off that way i apologize. We had all trucks out there and all hands on deck there was so much snow we couldnt start removing it untill the storm stopped. Thats usually how it works. This was just an overwhelming storm that brought alot of challenges out in the clean up process. Everyone is doing the best they can and trying to remove the snow for future storms and safety purposes. And yes its easier to dump the snow in the harbor. Where else could t go?
Allan White February 12, 2013 at 05:15 PM
Here is a constructive idea, why are there not wing trucks running main lines? There is plenty of width to justify such equipment on each mainline in town.The cost to add a wing when specing out a new truck is minimal and would increase the plowing width of one truck 50% , that with a high discharge main blade instead of these low baker plows they have now would have made the operators lives allot easier and freed up some equipment for other areas. The snow on the majority of roads I've been down from the swampscott line to village st is a good three to four feet off the curbing and needed to be pushed back, the proper equipment would have made the drivers storm and results a little easier... As for private snow being thrown in the road and automobiles parked illegally there are laws and fines on the books to enforce,the town has the right to fine and tow period.No excuses! There was a major breakdown if all of this wasnt happening, and by the sound of it there was a major breakdown if 48hours after the storm the town was still a mess. The town has some decent equipment, snowblower, sidewalk tractors , loaders, graders etc ,it is too bad they havent continued to support their employees by adding more quality equipment to help make their jobs easier and enforce the existing laws on the books during snow emergencies.
The Voice of Reason February 12, 2013 at 05:21 PM
Right on Jeff- Please see my comments on Sean Murphy's
Pat February 12, 2013 at 05:26 PM
Sideplows is a good idea. The loaders and back hoes all had plows fitted on them and were otherwise being used to help keep the snow off the st. Everyone working was plowing this was a freak storm with alot of snow. I myself think we do a really good job most storms this town has the best roads around. There was alot of snow to deal with this storm and it was only taken care of by dow workers. We dont have help form state or private plow drivers. This saves the town tons of money over the years and normally works cery well i dont think we shoul spend tons of money pottentially putting peoples jobs and budgets in jeopardy for a storm that happens like this every 5 to 10 years. But yes there is always room for improvement.
The Voice of Reason February 12, 2013 at 05:32 PM
They real issue today is, Why were the schools open today (Tuesday) ?? The sidewalks were not readied. Did any of you get to experience Village School drop off ? A nice policewomen was scurrying the kids held in her hand up the street from the West Shore Dr. Traffic lights up to the school. On a clear, dry great day Village St. is a nightmare during morning drop off. My 5th grader was so freaked out by what she was watching that I am having her dismissed early and I am leaving my job early today so I can pick her up before the S--t show begins at 2:15. I fail to understand once again what the decision makers amongst us are really thinking !!!
Pat February 12, 2013 at 05:38 PM
School should of been cancelled, i believe thats the school or superintedents decision but i am not positive.
John Buba February 12, 2013 at 05:55 PM
Pat, What would the town have needed to do a better job? That is what we are asking? More Plows? Different Plows? More People / Contractors? A place to cart the snow away to? We the taxpayers can decide if we want to spend the money to be ready for such a big storm. We can also decide if we want to divert funds from one area or another to support whatever needs to be done. We want you to be able to do an even better job with the right tools - We just need to know what was missing. So please help us out and let us know.
Pat February 12, 2013 at 07:37 PM
I think that was just a giant storm, generally speaking the town does a very good job and keeps the cost down on plowing and removal. Maybe sideplows would help, but i dont know for sure.
The Voice of Reason February 12, 2013 at 08:12 PM
John H- The sidewalks clear ? Have you happened to see what went on this morning at The Village School. It's damn lucky that some mother didn't plow her car into little John Doe as he was escorted up the street holding the police woman's hand... Schools sidewalks should be clear or there shouldn't be any school. Haven't we learned anything ??
header February 12, 2013 at 08:42 PM
I would advice anyone, who has a problem with the plowing, to do your homework first. Check out the Salem Patch on how they rated there wonderful plow job. Lol and take a look at lynn iteam to when you are at it. I am sorry for calling Mr.Bubba out but you so called headers have no idea whats goes into a 36hour Blizzard, u cant complain untill you have been there. I Know so go check that Salem patch, then talk to me.
whip February 12, 2013 at 08:52 PM
No matter how good of a job you do. Someone always find the need to complain. I really miss the real Marbleheaders in this town, this town used to be a great place to live.
John Buba February 12, 2013 at 09:16 PM
Whip I don't follow and what it with this yearning for only old Marbleheaders? Town thrive when there is a good mix of experienced homeowners and new community members. There is no question that the surrounding towns did a better job of clearing their streets. We want to know why? No one thinks it was because the workers were lazy. My guess is that we are understaffed and under equiped to handle such a storm. So then the question is if we want better service where do we cut spending so we can have adequate coverage and equipment for a major storm. This reasoning has nothing to do with the longevity in Marblehead of the individual making the case. In fact it might be said that looking at a problem squarely in the eye, and working hard to fix it is in the true old Marbleheader spirit. Having been here over 15 years and being involved in several government and quasi government areas, I think Marblehead would do well to re-examine some of its birthright arrogance. It creates an unwelcoming town image. You want proof? Look at how many road signs there are indicating how to get out of Marblehead and so few directing people into our lovely town. Is it any wonder business are struggling in town?
whip February 12, 2013 at 10:04 PM
Yes Jon I can understand what you are saying, I just wanted you to look at other towns and cities, look at Salem, patch. You will see they had awfull problems that the State did not do.Big reason why those main roads in Salem are so nice is because they have 4 big trucks with wing blaides on them. THEY ONLY DO THE SAME ST.OVER AND OVER. To be fair look how many sides streets that did not even see a plow. Im have no respect for people that just complain without the facts. Marblehead is in trouble , because nobody helps out anyone. Look when you go to cross the sidewalks. Nobody stops, i was hit at a cross walk down town, because someone was in a hurry.


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