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Question of the day

Tuesday, Feb 16, 2021

* Press release…

Governor JB Pritzker issued a disaster proclamation for all 102 counties in response to the dangerous winter storm that has blanketed the state with life threatening wind chills, power outages and accumulating snow. The extreme arctic temperatures affecting more than ten states adds additional stress on utility providers across the nation. As of 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, approximately 7,000 Illinois households were without power, and that number is expected to fluctuate as the strain of arctic temperatures and extreme weather continues. To alleviate stress on the nation’s grid, all Illinois residents are encouraged to take appropriate measures to safely conserve energy.

“I have directed my administration to use all resources at our disposal to keep our communities safe amid dangerous and ongoing winter weather,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “We are in communication with local governments to ensure they have the support they need in disaster response and recovery operations. We are also working with our federal partners to pursue federal assistance to help communities recover and to do what we can to protect ratepayers from soaring utility bills. I urge all Illinoisans to take this extreme weather seriously, avoid all unnecessary travel and check in on your neighbors.”

Extreme weather has resulted in frozen wells in key natural gas producing states, including Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas. The sub-zero temperatures are resulting in increased demand and decreased supply, causing natural gas prices to spike. Utility companies across the nation are reporting soaring wholesale costs, and without federal intervention, those increased prices could result in higher utility bills for Illinois residents in the coming weeks.

* The Question: How are you and yours coping?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

53 Comments
  1. - Anonamoose - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 1:51 pm:

    So far so good. With the sun out temps seem to be actually rising a bit so I’m starting to pull down the huge icicles and some snow off our roof to ease some of the weight.


  2. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 1:57 pm:

    I’ve been out shoveling since 10am and I have a tiny city lot. There’s no place to put all of the snow. Side streets are a mess, and most alleys are impassable. I shoveled out my half of the alley behind my garage, but again, there’s no place left to pile it up. I’ve got mounds towering over my head.

    Worried that my old garage is going to collapse. Raked off as much as I could, but it’s 18″ deep up there. Crossing my fingers and praying to St. Joseph the Carpenter to help that old shack hang on through this.

    The thaw is going to be a problem too. Every house on my black has long icicles hanging down ominously and that will get worse before it gets better.

    Winter in Chicago. Why do we live here?


  3. - SAP - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:00 pm:

    I look at this weather as a positive: Removes the temptation to gather socially.


  4. - AnonymousFool - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:01 pm:

    Finished shoveling the sidewalks and my driveway during lunch, just wish Springfield would plow my street.


  5. - Give Me A Break - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:05 pm:

    We only have about 7 inches on ground so nothing like others are having to deal with.

    For those of us in central Illinois the temp on Sunday is going to mean thawing snow. With ground temps well below freezing the melt may have no where to go but to cause flooding.


  6. - Skeptic - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:06 pm:

    Southern Sangamon county…all good here. No place to go and all day to get there.


  7. - Flying Elvis'-Utah Chapter - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:06 pm:

    Spent the last two hours plowing my driveway.

    Hats off to Union county, working wonders with county roads with limited resources.


  8. - sulla - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:07 pm:

    Everyone around me already had some level of low-grade depression due to, well…*gestures broadly at the world*. Adding a 15-day stretch of bitterly cold weather with lots of snow has not helped matters.

    I’ll probably pop a cold corona this weekend and point the space heater at my face to approximate what sitting on the beach would feel like right now.


  9. - Cheryl44 - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:14 pm:

    Took the trash and recycling out before Round 2 starts. It wasn’t bad out and the the snow was still light enough to knock off the dumpsters with a broom. I don’t expect trash pickup for a week–the alley looks impassable. Guys with snowblowers are back.


  10. - Cheryl44 - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:16 pm:

    Almost forgot: Karen Armstrong’s “The Bible: a Biography” is excellent.


  11. - The Ford Lawyer - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:18 pm:

    Shoveled the sidewalk out to the driveway, made a path for one car to get out. Dug out a little walkway for the dog to take care of his business. then I drove into town to take care of my literal business. Wife is teaching school from home. Kid is attending school from home. All is well.


  12. - Last Bull Moose - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:19 pm:

    The four of us in the house have been shoveling on and off for days. Hard to see when we pull out of the driveway as the show is piled high.

    A big two stage snow blower is on the shopping list for the summer.


  13. - Huh? - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:20 pm:

    Hiding out inside. Went out long enough to blow the snow out of the driveway and sidewalks. If I get out first, I do my neighbors sidewalks on my side of the block.

    The city plowed a huge windrow of snow across the driveway. Blew it right back into the street. To quote the public works director, “the snow gotta go somewhere.”


  14. - 32nd Ward Roscoe Village - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:21 pm:

    I had to shovel back stairs and a path to the garage this morning because old dog who goes out each morning could not get down the stairs to do his business.

    I echo: it is difficult to find a place to put the snow. I had to speak to the guys my next-door neighbor hired to shovel out his front; they were putting it on top of a pile that would then slide down to cover my front walk we had just shoveled. There is still room to put it in the parkway!


  15. - Perrid - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:25 pm:

    I’m good. Got power and supplies until the weekend, or so.


  16. - Downstate active - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:27 pm:

    Can only shovel driveway in five minute blocks of time. Too cold. Colder in Texas than New York City today. Stay strange America.


  17. - Another State Worker - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:29 pm:

    I live just north of Chicago, and per WMAQ, we had about 18 inches since yesterday. I feel like I’m living in Buffalo! But it looks like the worst of it is over. Also, we have a couple of great neighbors who like to run their snow blowers around the entire block. My wife’s going to be backing them cookies. Hope they didn’t vow to give up sweets for Lent.


  18. - Curious George - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:35 pm:

    Doing well here in Florida, second shot last Friday , paid my plow guy happily for the work he has done .


  19. - thechampaignlife - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:36 pm:

    Just finished shoveling for about 90 minutes. Probably about 10 inches on the ground. Got the sidewalk, walkway, and driveway from the car to the street done. No plows on our street yet, but the secondary road nearby is clear. Sunny and no wind, so it feels decent when you are moving.


  20. - Because I said so.... - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:36 pm:

    Thank goodness for a kind neighbor with a working snow blower who did the block long sidewalk.

    I agree with 47th, running out of places to put the snow. Our Chicago street hasn’t been plowed yet but cars look to be moving okay. Now we are looking at killer ice cycles.


  21. - DownSouth - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:42 pm:

    Live in old farmhouse with no central heat/air. Heat with stove. Have been sleeping downstairs where it is warmer. First time since we have lived here (since 95) milkhouse heater in basement has not prevented water pipes from freezing. Having to leave one faucet drip. That did not prevent pipe from hot water from freezing. Now run hot water briefly about every hour to keep that little bugger from freezing. I should add, luckily the frozen pipes unthawed very quickly and easily with no damage. Looking forward to upcoming warmer temps. Concerned about flooding come thaw and later on in spring. Temp in house stays at about an average of 65 vs usual 70ish (depending on rooms distance from stove) Road crews out today have done fab job - lots of drifting to contend with out here in the hinterlands but state highways have improved greatly. County roads are still hit and miss but the crews are trying hard. Biggest problem this morning - yella dog’s pet door was drifted shut requiring a human assisted trip out the back door at 0445. He now has a clear path from pet door to his stomping grounds. Also having to ration the bird seed in the feeders until can restock Friday-ish - completely over run with not just birds, but squirrels, possums, coons, and all manner of assorted wildlife looking for an easy meal.


  22. - clec dcn - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:44 pm:

    It has warmed up here pretty good now. I had to clear my patio on the back first for Trixie or she will not de her business. I wonder does Oscar have the same issues. Lucky here I have a sister in souther Texas not had power in 2 days and may not for a long time. They have not idea how to handle the cold and ice. They never get it. I do think it is probably good for covid distancing. Although some vaccine clinics closed for sure.


  23. - Joe Bidenopolous - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:49 pm:

    The Trib says Lincoln Square got 17 inches and my muscle soreness seems to confirm that. Where I live it snowed literally all day from the time I got up until this morning. Actually, it’d been snowing for three days more or less solidly.

    Like 47th, no place to put it anymore. Shoveled multiple times yesterday, sidewalks again this morning, garage and alley this afternoon. I have an igloo in my backyard from the previous 12-inch storm that has now grown significantly in height and needs to have its entrance cleared.

    All is well.


  24. - Banish Misfortune - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:49 pm:

    All good, took a nice walk down to the Lake with my mask on, good for coronavirus and frostbite.


  25. - Cool Papa Bell - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:51 pm:

    Shoveled the driveway twice yesterday, one more time this morning to pick up the drifts. Cleaned off the sidewalk. And now I LOVE having a sunny day with a south-west facing driveway.

    Went for about a 40 minute urban/lake shore hike late last night. I love being outside in the middle of a big winter storm. The solitude, the quite, the holding onto the smallest feeling about doing battle with Mother Nature.

    I have enjoyed this two weeks so much. Wish central Illinois was getting more snow on Wednesday.


  26. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:55 pm:

    Holding up pretty well. COVID hit the family too but thankfully it was mild. What a month it’s been with the snow, to pile on top of our other crises. Lots of shoveling, huge mounds of the stuff.


  27. - DuPage - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:55 pm:

    Electricity and gas working normally. Kids stopped by and shoveled the driveway. Everything good at this point.


  28. - JoanP - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:56 pm:

    I feel so lucky. I don’t have to go out. My car is in the building parking lot, which is regularly plowed. It’s warm inside, and I’m planning on jambalaya and cornbread for dinner.


  29. - Practical Politics - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 2:58 pm:

    @47th Ward:

    I hear you.

    The residential side street plowing doesn’t help too much as the truck clear the center of the streets and push the frozen snow and ice on to parked cars.

    Another hardship is that many neighborhoods nearer the lake were populated by commuters decades ago, but now everyone seems to own cars and parking is at a premium.


  30. - Ryan - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:03 pm:

    Even though it was some of the lightest powder I’ve shoveled, 18 inches is a lot! My arms are sore.


  31. - 62629 - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:04 pm:

    just trying to stay warm. shoveled a path to walk to garage. not shoveling the drive though. full-size truck will do fine


  32. - Dotnonymous - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:14 pm:

    I hope no one says ,”What else could go wrong”…for the jinx.

    We are making do…here in Macon county.

    I swear the kid who clears my driveway is a human snow blower… with a big smile.

    Watch out for super slippery ice under the snow…or you will bust your butt and suffer a concussion…like I did a few days ago…hurts everywhere…especially my pride…ouch.


  33. - SSL - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:19 pm:

    Smooth sailing.


  34. - illini - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:32 pm:

    I was without any power for close to 5 hours this morning. But that was bearable - I just went back to sleep. Fortunately I am well set for necessities and will not have to venture outside.


  35. - Manchester - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:36 pm:

    Doing well here in Springfield. Luckily my home is well insulated though the furnace has been getting a workout for sure. My 26 year old snowblower is still running strong so I blew out the driveway and sidewalk this morning and shoveled a place for my dog to do her business. Now if the city would just plow the street in our subdivision.


  36. - thisjustinagain - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:47 pm:

    Electric and gas good here in South Suburb bordering Chicago/Dolton/Harvey. Way too much snow; running out of places to put it. Took my time, and have shoveled out over a 24-hour period. Gray clouds now (3:45pm) look ominous for more snow. Fortunately not working, so no need to lose my parking space. Dibs system alive and well until the plows wipe out the items. Sun out bright earlier to raise the temp and spirits.


  37. - Ducky LaMoore - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 3:54 pm:

    Coping? No… everything is fine. My electric/gas bill is going to be the most expensive it has ever been, but I have been planning for that. Just riding it out and pretending like there is some strange health crisis keeping us all indoors.


  38. - a drop in - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 4:08 pm:

    Have a heart stress test scheduled next month. Felt like I’ve spent the last two weeks studying for it.


  39. - Jed - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 4:15 pm:

    7000 outages in Illinois is a really small impact ant a testament to the stability of our energy supply and delivery model in Illinois. There are 2 million customers without power in Texas. Hopefully this type of scenario is being considered as the state contemplates a seismic shift in Illinois’ energy supply via CEJA.


  40. - Ok - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 4:17 pm:

    Oh Jed, you gas guys and your frozen pipes


  41. - WestBurbs - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 4:24 pm:

    Dog having trouble busting through 18″; back hurts from shovelin; stack frozen; ice dam causing roof leak. Winter is awesome.


  42. - Langhorne - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 4:28 pm:

    A couple young industrious teenagers asked to shovel the driveway and sidewalk. 20 bucks. I also had them take the garbage out, and put a couple letters in the mailbox. Small driveway, but it took effort. So I gave them 40.


  43. - RNUG - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 4:53 pm:

    Doing fine. Had to get out to a long scheduled eye doctor appt yesterday. Hit the grocery store for a few items since I was out. Son did my driveway today after I repaired his snowblower. Temps been a little cool, one frozen (but not split) water line, had to turn on some extra heat so I know my gas & electric bills will be high … but we’re staying warm and healthy. Got out long enough to talk with a neighbor while he was having his driveway done. Other than the cold, blessed to basically be normal. Can’t say the same for friends and relatives in OK and TX.


  44. - Jed - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 5:01 pm:

    ==Oh Jed, you gas guys and your frozen pipes==

    Illinois gets it’s power from Nukes. But if by pipes you mean turbine blades, you might be right. it’s tough to see over the foot of snow on my solar panels.


  45. - bhartbanjo - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 5:10 pm:

    We had a nice long weekend. Most of the days had dropping air pressure, so we could have the fireplace running with no smoking. We fed the birds, we cooked and ate interesting things, we binge watched Dr Who from a set we got through the public library. And then today, the snowblower started up immediately.


  46. - zatoichi - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 5:11 pm:

    In central Ill. Plenty of room for snow from a long driveway. Old snowblower fired right up. Snow on garage floor is very slippery. Deer tracks all through back property. Electric and gas heat getting a solid workout. Do not have to go anywhere so had a nice nap.


  47. - Been There - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 5:16 pm:

    Well Cheryl Scott on channel 7 just said its the most snow she has ever seen. Now I’m closer in age to Tom Skilling and he can’t say that but it still is a lot. And of course I can’t get the 2 year old snow blower going this year when I tried it in January. The shop said it would be a couple of weeks and I kept saying we have probably seen the worst of it so I will just wait until next fall. Well I was wrong and have been sore after every time I shovel. Which I think they said has been 9 days in a row.


  48. - snowman61 - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 5:25 pm:

    Well snowblower bit the dust finally. Been expecting it since an old, old old craftsman, I think it was a 1973. Man got my money’s worth!!!
    Anyway, finish the driveway by hand, saw a tax client and now it out to dinner on snowmobile. Been a great year for me so far.


  49. - Amalia - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 6:00 pm:

    snow blower going as fast as powering back up will allow, shoveling key places around the house, drifts galore, thank goodness we got the paczki order yesterday or we would not have made it out to the main road.


  50. - Pot calling kettle - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 6:22 pm:

    Ah, the country life.

    Spent about 5 hours shoveling out the drive yesterday (2.5 mid-day and 2.5 when the snow tapered off last night) then another hour this morning. My garden tractor died last summer and decided not to get a snow removal attachment for the replacement…some regrets about that, but to be fair, I need the exercise.

    The local road commissioners and IDOT did great work. The plow was only able to clear one lane of my E-W country road, he had to bring out an end loader to clear the other half of the road. All clear by 1:00 this afternoon.


  51. - Dotnonymous - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 6:32 pm:

    (Shoveling Hack)

    On lighter snows of one or two inches…instead of using a small snow shovel, try a sheet of plywood as a shovel…works like a charm.


  52. - btowntruth from forgottonia - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 7:36 pm:

    Things are holding up mostly ok here in Upper Southeastern Forgottonia.
    About 6 inches of snow is what we got here.
    Roads in Cass County range from lousy to close to decent for the conditions.
    Worse on county highways (Arenzville Road,Concord Blacktop,etc.) than on the “main” roads (Route 67,Route 78,Route 125).


  53. - dlapine - Tuesday, Feb 16, 21 @ 7:47 pm:

    C-U area got ~6 inches with some drifts overnight, but today was calm, clear sunny. Roads were cleared early, didn’t venture out of town at all.
    Had to shovel out enough driveway to go get scheduled Covid Vaccination, but wasn’t gonna miss that! Champaign county was open to older folks with health conditions and I signed up last week for today.


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