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Today's word on journalism

Monday, January 29, 2007

Words as weapons:

"When he had a pen in his hand it was like giving a kid a machine gun."

--Peter Hall, theater director, on "Angry Young Man" playwright John Osborne (1929-1994)

Snowy roads will soon make driving trickier

By Erin Wadsworth

December 7, 2006 | For many drivers snow presents a bit of a conundrum when it comes to safe driving, acting as though they have never seen snow in their lives. Although the snow has not hit Cache Valley too hard, all residents know what's in store for the coming months. They're not just dreading inversion, but that multi-foot layer of white stuff creating panic for commuters.

Lt. Tracy Hulse of the Logan City Police Department says when it comes to car related fatalities in the winter situations are not much different than they are in the dry months.

"Normally in crashes, speed is what kills." said Hulse, " Yes, we do have a higher volume of crashes during the winter, but they usually involve a slower speed crash."

Although Logan sees more crashes in the winter, nothing changes drastically when it comes to patrolling the city streets, said Hulse. The main worry is what will happen when the snow plows need to make their way through the snow packed streets come morning.

"One difference is that we don't allow overnight parking on the road," said Hulse, "which enables the snow plows to clear a wider travel portion."

Snow plowing becomes a sticky issue when someone has to leave their house an hour early just to make it to work or school on time. Utah State University student Allison Coffman feels that the snow plows never get out fast enough to clear the roads before morning.

"The university shuttles took forever to get to their destinations," said Coffman. "They were always stuck on the hill on their way up to campus."

Hulse believes that the plowing of the roads during times of heavy snow is very effective, but things tend to get more complicated when the snow doesn't stop for days at a time.

"Sometimes when we get hit with a large snow storm late in the night," said Hulse, "there is a lot of catching up to do once they call out snow plow drivers."

As many dream of a white Christmas, most students are wishing for a safe trip home for the holidays. Traveling is always more stressful when you have to worry about sliding off the road, or spinning into another car on the road, said Coffman.

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