By Cheryl Dowden, February 15, 2021
Old Man Winter has arrived in Hot Springs Village with a bang, showering us with up to eight inches of snow dropped on the village overnight and into today. The POA staff is doing their very best to deal with this dangerous and debilitating event. The roads are frozen and treacherous, and many village drivers have found themselves in a precarious situation and have had to be rescued. The POA is asking that whenever possible, for everyone to stay off the roads.
Crews are working around the clock to clear the roads in this infrequent winter event. According to the POA, “Those of us who have lived here for decades have never seen weather like this in the Village. We know many of our residents are from northern and midwestern states where this kind of weather is the norm.”
“Unlike communities in those cold-weather states, Hot Springs Village does not have a large arsenal of snow-removal equipment because it would be costly and rarely used. Please stay off the roads and allow our crews to work the highest priority roads and areas,” the POA continued.
According to Manager Todd Noles, “the crews from different departments are working around the clock in shifts.” Crews are leaving their families and risking a treacherous drive to work to go out in difficult conditions to clear the roads.
Staff began work last week to stay ahead of the snowy and icy event. They have worked diligently to formulate a plan to keep Villagers safe and sound. The staff has been updating their website and also sending out emails regarding important advisories.
The POA has three snowplows, one grader, and several sand trucks to tackle the six to eight inches of snow, with more snow due to arrive later in the week. There are over 504 miles of roads in the village, with more than 475 miles being paved. Due to little to no visibility, the crews could not begin clearing the roads as early as they would have liked. Crews have also been diligently sanding roads.
Many services and businesses have been forced to cancel operations. These include but are not limited to trash pick up, area restaurants, the Coronado Fitness center, and all other POA recreation facilities. The administration office was also closed today.
At 5:00 p.m. Interim General Manager John Paul stated, “Our crews have cleared all of DeSoto, gate to gate, and all of the fire stations and ambulance sites. Jason Temple said that they will be working on other main roads later today. The crews are making great progress, considering we don’t have much equipment for this type of thing. Our job now is to communicate to the property owners that it will take some time to get everywhere in the Village, especially with the next round coming on Wednesday. I continue to be impressed with the quality of our staff and their dedication to getting things done.”
Temperatures are expected to plummet to as low as minus two degrees Fahrenheit.
The POA is cautioning everyone to keep their water faucets running to prevent expensive plumbing repairs.
According to Power Outage.US, Saline County has six cases of no power at the time of publication of this article, and Garland County shows four outages. I am unaware whether these outages are in the Village. Keep your fingers crossed that all outages are restored quickly.
Many thanks to our POA staff, Law Enforcement Officers, and Fire and Rescue Teams for doing all they do to keep us safe under all conditions. Special thanks for assistance with this article to Interim General Manager, John Paul; Director of Public Services, Jason Temple; Director of Programs and Operations, Stephanie Heffer; and Todd Noles, Common Property and Forest Manager.
Advisory updates can be found here on the Explore the Village website, under the members’ section.
Click on the photographs below to move through the slide show. Photographs provided by Manager Todd Noles.
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