Valley continues to dig ... and dig



Market St. Snow Issues

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Monday morning commuters found Market St in Boardman still snow covered in places

YOUNGSTOWN — Enough already.

Snowbanks that line driveways and fill corners of parking lots have people wondering: Where will they put more snow?

Homeowners should plan before trying to stack new snow on top of old snow that is already several feet high, said Chris Mikol, chief designer at American Beauty Landscaping in Boardman.

He advises homeowners to attack the top of their snowbanks with a digging shovel. Knock it down a bit before shoveling the driveway.

“That way, you aren’t throwing snow over your shoulder,” he said.

And there’s going to be plenty to throw.

The Mahoning Valley is expected to receive 4 to 10 inches in this latest snowstorm from Tuesday afternoon till about 3 p.m. today, according to the National Weather Service’s forecast.

The area is under a winter-storm warning till 7 p.m. today.

An inch of snow is expected for tonight, according to the NWS forecast.

Snow showers are in the forecast for Thursday and Friday. Also, there’s a chance of snow Saturday, Sunday and Monday, according to the weather-service forecast.

There could be accumulations on Thursday from lake-effect snow in pockets of the area, said Gary Garnet, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Cleveland.

This comes on top of the weekend storm that saw accumulations of 16 to 20 inches in portions of Mahoning and Columbiana counties.

There are parking bans throughout the area.

In Struthers and Niles, the ban is until further notice. The ban in Boardman exists until 6 p.m. Friday and is in effect in Cortland till noon today, in Weathersfield until noon Thursday and in Austintown till 6 p.m. Thursday.

Tony Bettile, owner of Buckeye Lawn Service in Canfield, reminded homeowners to think twice before stacking a tall pile at the end of a driveway. The pile should not be so high that it blocks the line of sight for drivers backing out, he said.

“All I can say is, ‘Throw it farther,’ or get your neighborhood boy and don’t stress yourself,” he said.

Many area residents decided on a third option after the weekend snowstorm. They went out and bought a snowblower.

“Sales have been very brisk,” said Jay Curry, store manager at Do-Cut True Value Hardware in Canfield.

So many people were looking to retire their snow shovels after Saturday’s storm that the store was sold out of snowblowers by Monday. The store has been busy taking orders because it has another shipment due by the end of the week.

Homeowners who rely on a truck to plow their driveways shouldn’t have any worries, said Mikol from American Beauty Landscaping. There should be somewhere to push the additional snow, he said.

Businesses, on the other hand, could have a problem. Pushing more snow into existing snowbanks could cut into valuable parking spaces.

Officials from the landscaping companies said they will give business owners the option of having their snow rearranged. The service costs extra because it requires front-end loaders to be brought in so that snow can be stacked higher or placed in another area.

The expected big snowstorm means some business owners will have to either pay for the front-end loader or lose about 15 percent of the parking spaces, said Bettile from Buckeye Lawn Service.

Some of his accounts, such as a dialysis center and a school for the disabled, always opt for the front-end loader during big snows because they need their lots to be clear, he said.

But perhaps more extreme measures are needed this year.

Mikol said American Beauty’s contracts have provisions for the company to haul away snow if necessary. Roll-off bins would be brought in and filled with snow, he said.

“We’ve never had to do that, but this might be the first time,” he said.

The snow-shoveling inmates at the Trumbull County sheriff’s office are back at work after a car accident that damaged their equipment.

Don Guarino, chief deputy for Sheriff Thomas Altiere, said the department was able to repair one of three snowblowers that were damaged last month, had one that was not involved in the accident and borrowed one from the jail.

Guarino also borrowed a trailer from the environmental-enforcement division of the sheriff’s office, he said.

The three-man crew and corrections officer Brian Stambaugh went back out Tuesday morning and cleared driveways and sidewalks at 14 homes, Guarino said.

The service is free and provided to anyone who is home-bound and doesn’t have family, neighbors or friends to help them, especially senior citizens. To be added to the list, call the Senior Citizens Neighboring Program at (330) 675-7096.

Because of the snowy forecast, the judges of the 7th District Court of Appeals have canceled their road trip to East Palestine High School, which had been scheduled for this morning. Oral arguments in three cases the court were to hear — Adams v. Ward and State v. Richard Gray, both originating in Mahoning County; and State v. John T. Thompson from Columbiana County — will be rescheduled before the students at East Palestine High School.

Warren city schools announced late Tuesday that classes would be canceled today due to weather. Victory Christian Center in Lowellville also canceled all evening programs and events scheduled for today.

For other closings, delays and cancellations, click here.

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