We are likely to remember November’s storm for a long time with the intense wind and rain. Causing so much devastation and loss for our region in the form of road closures, power outages, and damage from fallen trees. Yet at the same time it was a time to see the great heroes among us.
Let there be light…
A special thank you goes out to all the PUD and Linemen who were out there around the clock to restore our power and reopen our roads. I was so thankful to see the power return to individuals all across the county. Thank you seems, at times, like a small thing to say for all those who make a real difference.
Lights, Sirens, Action…
We share the road with heroes. They walk, drive and work among us. Putting our needs ahead of their own. Thank you to all of the first responders who are constantly on call to help at a moments’ notice, Dispatch, Firemen, Police, Sheriff, State Patrol, Ambulance, EMT’s, Nurses, Doctors, the list goes on.
Right, Left, Right Left…
With that in mind be sure to yield to Emergency Vehicles. If they are traveling in route to respond to an emergency move to the right and let them pass you and hurry onto the emergency. Do this for them...Do this for you. You can get some serious tickets for not yielding to the right.
If they have reached their destination and are stopped along the right side of the road, be sure to slow down and change lanes to allow them to conduct their business without concern for their own safety. Emergency zones are defined as the adjacent lanes of the roadway 200 feet before and after a stationary emergency vehicle with a siren or flashing lights, tow truck using red lights, emergency assistance vehicle using warning lights, or police vehicle using emergency lights.
Do Not Cross...
The road closed signs are for our safety. During the most recent storm I encountered two different types of signs along my travels. The penalty for crossing a Road Closed with the County Sheriff symbol is a misdemeanor, a Criminal offense, for those who drive around the sign.
The Road Closed to Thru Traffic is a warning to drivers that the normal route is obstructed. So be sure to treat the roadway with caution, as you do not know when or where there is an obstruction.
Here is a great resource for planning a trip that may include road closures. Snohomish County road closure map
Speaking of obstructions it is not safe to drive over downed power lines. Treat all power lines as if they are live with electricity. While we like to get a charge out of life, the voltage contained in downed power lines is not the type to toy with.
And the Waters Came Up…
Do not drive into flooded roadways. Water over the roadway is a sneaky thing, as it disguises the obstacles below the surface. It only takes 6 inches of water to get you into a dangerous situation, by floating your car, removing traction, or by hidden obstacles or road damage. That does not even begin to cover the possible damage to your vehicle.
Use Good Sense…Look, Listen, Live
During the storm watch closely for falling trees and branches. Be aware that fallen branches may have sharp edges that can be a danger to your tires.
It may be wise to drive with your windows rolled down just a little, to allow you to listen to what is happening around you.
Be aware of the changing smells around you. Burning trees, leaking gas lines, etc.
Next time the Storms come in we hope that you will be better prepared and ready to rise to the challenge.
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If you have been arrested, received a notice requiring you to appear in court, or have been given a ticket you may need the of help of Rick Merrill.
Rick is an experienced Criminal Defense Attorney and has been helping people in your situation since 1992.
If you have any questions throughout the process call the office, we very happy to help
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Image Credit: T. Ramsey