Advocate for walking: Shovel your walk and your neighbors’ too
If you have left your house at all during this bitter snowy season you have likely seen people walking in the street to avoid slippery (or should I say “slippy”) sidewalks. Your initial thought may have been, “Get out of the road!” but as bicyclists we know that we don’t like to hear that. If you want to keep people walking on the sidewalks be sure to do the right thing and shovel your walk.
When sidewalks are left unshoveled for days, ice accumulates and it becomes hazardous to walk down the street. It is part of the city law to shovel your sidewalk and you can be cited for not complying.
City Code 419.03: (this is copied from an all caps website, I’m not yelling at you)
EVERY TENANT, OCCUPANT, OR PROPERTY OWNER HAVING THE CARE OR CHARGE OF ANY LAND OR BUILDING FRONTING ON ANY STREET IN THE CITY, WHERE THERE IS A SIDEWALK…WITHIN 24HRS AFTER THE FALL OF ANY SNOW OR SLEET, OR THE ACCUMULATION OF ICE CAUSED BY FREEZING RAINFALL, CAUSE THE SAME TO BE REMOVED FROM THE SIDEWALK.
I’ve noticed we have a variety of compliance with this law in our neighborhoods.
Walking is the most natural form of human travel yet people are forced to skate on ice when their neighbors choose not to shovel or sweep the snow from the sidewalk. Perhaps your neighbor is elderly, a busy single parent, disabled, or just plain lazy. Whatever the reason may be, if you’re out shoveling snow and their walk isn’t clear, spend a few extra minutes helping them out. One of your neighbors might pay it forward the next time it snows, and if they don’t, just shrug and make yourself a rewarding cup of hot chocolate.
If you really don’t want to get out there and shovel yourself, make arrangements to have your walk shoveled. There is probably a kid in your neighborhood who would love to earn a few bucks shoveling. Here’s an idea, start a snow shoveling fund with your neighbors and give the kids something to do during their 2-hour delay.
And please, when you see someone shoveling, thank them for keeping their sidewalk clear. A little bit of positive reinforcement goes a long way.
Not a member of BikePGH? Join today! We need you to add your voice! Bike Pittsburgh works to protect cyclist’s rights and promote the vision of making Pittsburgh a safer and more enjoyable place to live and to ride. For more info, check out:www.bikepgh.org/membershipR.....30;..
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