Bloomberg continues to urge patience

December 30, 2010 1:00:53 PM PST
How to prevent this next time? That's got to be the focus of the examination into the ill-thought-out decisions made by New York City officials into how the blizzard clean up was handled.

The New York Times' tick-tock of events leading up to the blizzard today clearly shows a perfect storm (pardon the pun) of bad decisions and bad timing. The failure of City Hall to declare a snow emergency has confounded many. That meant that some crucial streets weren't cleared. And that the salt trucks weren't out in the blizzard also seems to have added to the problem. They waited until it was over, and the snow had already piled up.

There also seemed to be a vacation mentality at work, with some officials and workers on holiday. Just to contrast with how the private sector played this: When our Meteorologist Lee Goldberg revised his forecast on Friday night, that had the coastal storm rushing west, the newsroom's management went on alert. And by Saturday when the National Weather Service issued a blizzard warning, Eyewitness News staffers were called into work. Many people you saw on air Sunday had been on vacation with their families on Saturday.

I suppose it may be more complicated when you're dealing with thousands of City workers, but the system was in place for us to be contacted, and called in. Why wasn't there a similar system in place for the City? And if there were, why didn't it work effectively?

Added to this today, allegations that some Dept. of Sanitation workers intentionally slowed down their snowplowing, or, in other cases, didn't plow at all. This was reportedly in protest of recent budget and workforce cuts.

If true, it put the safety of New Yorkers in jeopardy. There are calls for investigations into this as well.,

As for the Mayor's vow-to-plow, it came close this morning, but it didn't happen. There were some New York streets still unplowed.

We'll have the latest on the clean up and the controversial aftermath tonight at 11.

We'll also have the controversy in New Jersey, where Gov. Chris Christie is returning, having spent this blizzard week in Florida, at Disney World. The Governor isn't making himself available tonight, but he's being dogged for his MIA status by a group of people who have started "WheresChristie.Com."

The Lt. Governor was also out of town, she's the first one in state history, spending time with her ailing father. The president of the State Senate became acting governor.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Lee's AccuWeather forecast, and Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can join Liz Cho and me, tonight at 11.

BILL RITTER

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