Our View: Thumbs up to those who move the snow

February 17, 2019
A Minnesota Department of Transportation plow rolled onto its side after being rear-ended by a semi truck on U.S. 52 north of 75th Street on Feb. 7.

We would be remiss if we did not salute the numerous snow plow drivers who have been working around the clock this past week to keep area streets and highways at least passable.

Snowfall in Rochester for February could approach or surpass the 41.3 inches that fell in December 2010. And that doesn’t include the 18.5 inches that fell in the final two weeks of January. That’s a lot of snow to be pushed aside, cleared and hauled away.

Don’t forget the private businesses that have been plowing non-stop for seemingly two weeks, and the tow truck operators who have been pulling vehicles out of snow banks and ditches.

Thumbs up to everyone working above and beyond to keep us moving in this snowy winter.

Thumbs down to drivers hitting snow plows

Travel has been hazardous enough this month without drivers creating even more trouble on the roads. As of mid-week, 10 snow plows have been struck by cars and trucks while working on area highways in southeastern Minnesota, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation.

We don’t know if that’s a record, but we do know it’s too many. Experienced winter drivers should know that blowing and falling snow, coupled with the snowy haze stirred up by a plow, can quickly create white-out conditions. Drivers are reminded to keep a safe distance between your vehicle and a snow plow, whether on a city street or an Interstate highway.

Thumbs up to women’s suffrage celebration

The History Center of Olmsted County will launch a yearlong celebration of the 100th anniversary of women gaining the right to vote with a program on Feb. 24.

Rochester and Minnesota played an early role in attempts to grant women the right to vote. Rochester even hosted women’s rights pioneer Susan B. Anthony in 1877 — 43 years before women would finally win the right to vote.

Today, it’s inconceivable that women, whose votes can swing an election, would be denied the right to vote. The series of programs planned for the next year represents a history lesson from which we all can learn.