Ferdie to Bob

  • Boojferd
    Dear Bob, here are some photos of my life here on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I love kids, working with the grounds crew, swimming, playing with my dog friends, and especially my own family people.
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    « Blue and white by night | Main | Photo blogging the St. Louis winter storm »

    December 01, 2006

    Comments

    john

    Yes a small winter storm cripples the area. Gee you would think by now that our local elected leaders would realize that our infrastructure needs to be updated. These lines offering electricity, phone service and cable are the most important highways in our region. However, our leaders believe that spending close to $600 million to rebuild an existing highway is more important.

    Too bad we just spent over $600 million on a mass transit system that is also crippled by this little storm.

    John, I agree with you 100 percent. This is absolutely ridiculous.

    ron

    for goodness sakes folks it is a natural disaster. what do you expect the local leaders to do??? john, your reference to a little storm is absolutely ridiculous.

    ron

    Hey john! what do you consider a little storm?

    Storm cuts power to more than half a million in St. Louis area; number may rise
    News-Democrat
    Power outage safety tips
    Ameren's map of power outages
    Major highway conditions in Illinois
    Complete forecast
    More than half a million people -- nearly a quarter of Ameren's customers in the St. Louis area -- were without power Friday morning following an overnight ice storm.

    Representatives of the power company say not only do they not know when power will be restored, but that outages might get worse before they get better.

    "I'm afraid we're going to see the numbers keep creeping up," said Ameren spokesperson Erica Abbett. "What happens a lot of times is when we pull a branch off of a power line one place and another one goes down somewhere else or when we power up a line that has been repaired, it blows out something somewhere else."

    Abbett said cold weather, inaccessible roads and the overwhelming number of downed branches are combining to cause problems.

    "This is a whole different ballgame than the storms we had over the summer," Abbett said. "The weather and conditions are causing a lot of difficulties. Given the nature and the severity of the damage, we aren't giving anticipated restoration times because we don't want to get peoples' hopes up with unrealistic expectations."

    In Edwardsville, about half the households in town were without power at 7 a.m. But by mid-morning that number had climbed to 75 percent, according to city Fire Chief J. Brian Wilson.

    "We have not had any serious injuries as of this time (due to the storm)," Wilson said. "We have had two house fires, one of which was due to the use of candles for light. Residents are urged not to leave any candles unattended or go to sleep with candles lit."

    Wilson also reminded residents to be careful when using generators for power not to allow carbon monoxide to enter their homes and not to try to use stoves or ovens for heat because it is a fire hazard.

    The storm also closed hundreds of metro-east schools and knocked out numerous traffic signals on main and side roads, many of which are covered by a sheet of ice and snow that began to fall in the middle of the night. But authorities said tree limbs are the hazard they are most worried about.

    Tree limbs weighed down by a thick coat of ice could snap at any time, said Collinsville Fire Capt. Mike Brown. In his city, about 90 percent of people were without power Friday morning and the fire department had fielded more than 100 emergency calls by noon.

    "Our guys were dodging falling limbs whenever they went out," Brown said. "If you don't have to go out, don't. Even going into your back yard could be dangerous."

    Belleville Mayor Mark Eckert said about a third of his city was without power this morning, and there were many downed power lines

    "City crews are assessing the damage," Eckert said. "We've been out quite a bit throughout the night and throughout the morning."

    Eckert urged residents to remain inside their homes.

    "We're very concerned that these falling tree limbs don't hurt anybody. It's a very dangerous situation."

    Downed trees and property damage were spread across the metro-east from Godfrey in the north -- where residents of the Blu Fountain Nursing home were without heat -- to Millstadt where trees were down all over the village.

    "Most nursing homes have backup generators in case their is a power outage," Blu Fountain administrator Don Dill said. "But, while the generator will power the lights, heating systems take a lot more power."

    Dill said he was calling nursing homes all over the area looking for a place to send his residents when a large generator was found to power his home's heating system. The furnace was back on just before noon.

    In O'Fallon, there are scattered power outages throughout the city. Trees laden with ice were down. At Cambridge House, a senior assisted-living facility, generators were keeping lights on, but residents' individual apartments were without heat or electricity.

    Warming stations are being set up across the metro-east to serve people who will be without power for an extended period of time.

    The American Red Cross has set up shelter at Liberty Middle School on Goshen Road in Edwardsville.

    Three shelters have been set up in Collinsville. They're at the American Legion, the VFW hall and Meadow Heights Baptist Church, all on Vandalia Road, the only part of town with power.

    In Belleville, a warming center has been set up at Westhaven School. In East St. Louis, there is one at 225 N. Ninth Street. According to the National Weather Service, the snow and ice was gone from the forecast, with mostly sunny to partly cloudy skies on deck for Friday and Saturday.

    "The danger will not end with the final snowflakes, though," the Weather Service said. "Strong winds will blow the snow ... possibly reducing the visibility to a mile or less at times. The strong winds will continue to blow down ice covered trees and power lines. Widespread power outages are being reported ... and will likely continue to spread this morning with the strong winds.

    "With the cold air ... and strong winds ... wind chill readings are dipping into the single digits. Exposed skin can freeze within minutes at these readings. Even though the snow is ending ... conditions are still very dangerous. Travel is not recommended this morning."

    The storm closed schools across the metro-east and canceled civic and public events Thursday night. More cancellations may occur today.

    Pam

    I agree with John-yes, there is a storm, but nothing of the magnitude that has been experienced in the past. We could go back years-the great storm of 1967, those in the 1970's, etc. The point is those storms were much greater and the infrastructure could handle it. People now-a-days start panicking. Why can you go to major areas in the western US where they have storms, or go to the European Alps where they have more severe weather than this most recent 'storm'- yet they have no problems with electric, etc. like St. Louis has had.
    Chicago and other major cities have ice/snow storms worse than what St. Louis just had and the infrastructure- does a MUCH better job handling it than St. Louis-based on everything seen/heard. St. Louis needs to take some lessons from other cities on how to get their act together.

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