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Northampton Daily Voice serves Bethlehem Twp, Bushkill Twp, Easton, Forks Twp, Hanover Twp, Lehigh Twp, Lower Saucon Twp, Moore Twp, Northampton & Palmer Twp

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TRAPPED: This Entire Allentown Street Is Still Waiting To Be Plowed Out

An entire block — near the intersection of West Fairview Street and 15th Street — has yet to receive any attention from the city’s snow removal crews, a local resident says. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Rosie Serene
Jan. 25, 2016. Allentown residents await help digging out of a storm. Photo Credit: Jennifer Ann Gross

Has your street been fully plowed and salted following the heavy snowfall earlier this week? If so, consider yourself lucky.

Rosie Serene, of Allentown, can’t say she is.

Days after the massive storm that dropped nearly two feet of snow on Lehigh Valley, Serene's entire block was left to fend for itself.

The block, located near the intersection of West Fairview Street and 15th Street, has yet to receive any attention from the city’s snow removal crews, according to Serene.

“What if there's an emergency?” she told Daily Voice. “We have older people on our block so it's not as easy as just getting the whole block together.”

Though the city’s website lists a dedicated phone number for snow control, an automated message states that no requests are being accepted.

“We are currently working on clearing the secondary roads and alleys,” the message said.

“We will revisit the main roads, salting and plowing as necessary. Our crews are out working in every district all over the city in a grid formation, so please be patient with us until we can get to your area.”

Seems innocent enough — however, the message cuts off and provides no avenue for those who remain snowed in to share their location or growing concern.

“We are still under a snow emergency and cannot take any plowing or salting requests at this time,” says the message, which concludes by providing the snow crews’ set schedule for the week.

City Communications Manager Mike Moore, meanwhile, asks residents to stay patient.

“We understand the frustration and urge everyone to stay patient. Our crews have been working round the clock since Sunday and will be for the foreseeable future. Every available piece of equipment is involved in the effort.”

Moore estimates that 85 percent of secondary streets are open but have not been plowed curb to curb. About 40 percent of alleys, he said, have also been opened.

“The city has more than 440 miles of roadway that consists of about 1,500 lane miles that need to be cleared," added Moore, who also suggests drivers stick to main roads and one-ways “as much as possible.”

“We have recorded the second largest snowfall in the city’s history. Just like in the record year of 2016, it is going to take days to finish the job. We are running into the usual problems associated with a significant snowfall; abandoned vehicles and people throwing snow into the street hampering our ability to get the job done.”

The same problem happened in 2016. Residents in one Facebook group are sharing videos from that storm (see photo above).

"Making this a live thread again because this is more than a mayor problem," Jennifer Ann Gross wrote in the forum. "This has been going on way before the mayor."

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Serves Bethlehem Twp, Bushkill Twp, Easton, Forks Twp, Hanover Twp, Lehigh Twp, Lower Saucon Twp, Moore Twp, Northampton & Palmer Twp

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