By Dani Naess Hellesund
The never-ending snowfall on the campus and on Long Island has created potentially dangerous situations. Students, both commuters and residents, are facing problems relating to the snow and ice.
The first part of the spring semester has been a non-stop ordeal of school closings and bad weather. Some students are finding the snow to be a big hassle, but nothing that affects them in a really bad way. For other students, the snow has caused problems and even some hazardous situations, with people slipping on the ice, and sharp icicles hanging on the roof edge, scaring others.
Kelly Urbonas, a junior Criminal Justice major, said that she hadn’t noticed any hazardous conditions on campus. However, she has a problem with the parking lots. “They don’t put down enough salt,” she said. The Snow and ice in the parking lots has caused problems for Urbonas, who said her car was recently stuck.
Inger Gine Soerboe, a senior Chemistry major, experienced sidewalks on campus that hadn’t been plowed. Soerboe has a friend who slipped on campus. “He almost missed the shuttle because he fell so hard,” she added.
All the snow days have been an annoyance for many, but some think that the closures have been necessary. Soerboe is a commuter, and she is happy that she doesn’t have to get in a car in the bad weather. “I’ve been in plenty of situations where the cars I’ve been in are not properly equipped for the winter weather, and as such I have been afraid for my life,” she said.
Jessica Beissel, a senior Childhood Education major, hadn’t heard of anything bad happening on campus, regarding the snow. However, She thought, that plowing the sidewalks right before classes could be a hazard as well. “If they don’t see a student walking by, they could potentially hit them,” she said. Beissel was also dissatisfied with the parking lots on campus. She thought that the plowing wasn’t sufficient, and that the ice and snow could be hazardous for students walking long stretches to get to class.
“We focus just on keeping main roads and paths clear for emergencies,” said Bill Kirker, head of facilities. “We also try to keep primary entrances to dorms open for access.” Kirker also said that there were other issues to take into consideration about snow removal. “How long can our people go before they are tired to the point it is unsafe? Also how the equipment holds up,” he said. “Trucks, plows, tractors, sanders, and blowers are all mechanical things that can and will eventually
break down, ” he added. “These things will slow down the snow clearing process.”
Beissel, also thought that the school closings were necessary, but she thought that the school was way too slow in giving notice to the students about the campus closing. “Not everyone lives ten minutes away,” she said. On Wednesday, Feb. 12, before 11 p.m., LIU announced that there was a delayed opening on Thursday, Feb. 13, but then decided to close down the campus for the entire day the following morning.