FLATBUSH – It’s the day after the “Bomb Cyclone.” The snow has stopped falling and the roads have been cleared. Those who decided to stay in the warmth of their homes yesterday instead of shoveling out their cars will have a tough time today.
Schools are back in session and so is the MTA. Though the streets for the busses to drive on have been cleaned, the sidewalks where the many passengers wait, have not. It seems as though all the snow from the street has landed on the sidewalk.
Because some busses were a bit slow (which is expected during snow), many people (for example, high school and college students) had to wait a while in the 15 degree weather while cold winds blew (a wind chill advisory has been in effect until 10 am Saturday).
.@NWSNewYorkNY Wind Chill Advisory for NYC: Friday, 1/5 at 1AM to Saturday, 1/6 at 10AM. Wind chills near -5 degrees possible. https://t.co/t918yhlx8z. Multilingual & ASL link: https://t.co/UvKI1EOISR.
— NYCEM – Notify NYC (@NotifyNYC) January 4, 2018
But the problem arose when the bus arrived: How does one get on?
For some the task was simple, just put one foot into the snow bank, balance, put the other foot in, balance, take the first foot out and hopefully land on the street without tripping, slipping, or dying.
For others, it was quite difficult, especially for the elderly who had canes, those in wheelchairs, and those who simply lost their balance while attempting to climb the hill. People usually end up climbing the snow from one area when the bus arrives (the area in front of the door), and the line gets held up for those who are being cautious.
That’s why many people just wait on the street when the bus hasn’t even arrived yet– something that isn’t advised as a) it’s on the street; b) it’s dangerous; and c) cars/busses could very well skid because of the ice.
Sometimes, good samaritans shovel out a small path from the sidewalk to the street. It’s a narrow space for people to easily get on and off the bus and is very effective, but not every bus stop has that narrow space.
Though many bus stops do have good samaritans who offer an arm for someone to hold on to and balance while stepping into the snow– they’re called Brooklynites.
We will update when we hear back from the MTA for comment.