Unpassable: Businesses along Route 6 in Bristol complain about sidewalks

Published on Wednesday, 23 January 2019 20:28

Snow and packed ice on sidewalks lingers on after this week’s storm, and business owners on Route 6 and residents are complaining about it.

Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu said City Hall gets complaints, and she hears them on her police radio, about icy sidewalks.

“For the businesses along Route 6 it’s really difficult, because those larger plow trucks come through after sidewalks have been cleared and deposit snow back on the sidewalk,” she said. “We’re getting a lot of complaints from property owners, who say ‘I cleared and they came through again.’ It’s really a matter of timing.”

Zoppo-Sassu stated that homeowners and business owners have 12 hours from the conclusion of a storm to clear their sidewalks to make them passable.

“This was an extremely difficult storm and we understand that but it’s still a liability and people need to get out there and figure out how to at least make the sidewalks safer, with salt or sand or something.”

Bristol’s Commission for Persons with Disabilities issued a reminder recently “that all citizens, including those with physical or visual impairments, rely on property owners to properly maintain their sidewalks, particularly during winter months.”

The commission’s statement cited City Ordinance Sec. 21, indicating “that every owner or occupant of land adjoining any street or part of a street adjacent to whose land there is a paved sidewalk, and sidewalks with wheelchair ramps, shall clear such sidewalk and sidewalks with wheelchair ramps, of snow within 12 hours after a storm which ends between the hours of 3 a.m. and 9 p.m. and within nine hours after a storm which ends between 9 p.m. and 3 a.m.; and whenever ice shall form on such sidewalk, and sidewalk wheelchair ramps, shall either remove the same within such time, or cover it with salt and sand, so that it shall be safe for travel.”

“On behalf of our neighbors and friends who rely on your cooperation in this important matter…thank you!” the commission concluded.

“It’s never a smooth process,” she added. “Every year it’s complicated, but the police are out there, they’re enforcing it. If people do want to make a complaint then they should call the non-emergency number.”

The police department’s non-emergency number is 860-584-3011.

Southington’s Assistant Superintendent of Highways Gabe Calandra said that Sunday’s storm was “pretty brutal.”

“We’ve tried to do as much as we can,” he said. “Our crews usually go out once, but for this they went out twice and sanded in between to at least provide some grit, so it’s not as slippery. We’re not in terrible shape, but there is still some snow and ice on some patches. We’ve cleared the school-access sidewalks and the sidewalks that adjoin open space areas. Most of our sidewalks are looking pretty good and I’m hoping that the rain we’re supposed to get clears up the rest.”

In Plainville, Superintendent of Roadways Dominick Moschini, said Wednesday that sidewalks are still “an absolute mess.” He urged residents to be cautious.

“Mother nature threw us a doozy,” he said. “There’s no way that we can get it all; there’s still lots of ice everywhere. But, in a couple days, it should all be gone.”

Plymouth Director of Public Works Charles J. Wiegert said that the cleanup is still going.

“The sidewalks are not as far clean as the roads,” he said. “The roads are in generally pretty good shape. We’ve done some sanding on the sidewalks on town roads. Each property owner is responsible for their own sidewalk area, but we’ve done in front of the library and other high-traffic areas.”

Susan Corica can be reached at 860-973-1802 or scorica@bristolpress.com.

Brian M. Johnson can be reached at 860-973-1806 or bjohnson@bristolpress.com.

Posted in The Bristol Press, Bristol, General News, Plainville, Plymouth, Southington Herald, Terryville on Wednesday, 23 January 2019 20:28. Updated: Wednesday, 23 January 2019 20:31.