This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on December 14, 2008 8:40 PM. The previous post in this blog was Ready for anything. The next post in this blog is Storm update: Nothing's different from an hour ago. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Sunday, December 14, 2008

City officially closed until MLK Day

Portland officials announced tonight that the city will be closed tomorrow, and remain closed until it thaws out, which is currently projected for January 19. With a 0.0016-inch sheet of ice coating side streets, and the city's supply of gravel depleted, travel within the city limits has become completely impractical. "Not only that," said city spokesperson Brent Schmidtlapp, "but it's really cold."

The Arctic blast that seized the city this morning has led to the first unpleasant incident involving the new "Portland Loo" public toilets in the Old Town neighborhood. Rescue crews were summoned to the "loo" at NW Fifth and Glisan shortly after a homeless man's buttocks became stuck to the facility's metal seat in the freezing temperatures. Joining in the rescue effort was city commissioner Randy Leonard, a former fireman and seasoned emergency technician, who freed the man by massaging Ben-Gay into the affected area. Police credited the actions of a passerby who heard the victim's cries for help through the transom over the door and used a cell phone to call for help.

Comments (7)

Laugh all you want but where do I buy chains for a bicycle?

Hey, I live up near Leif Erickson Drive in Forest Park, and there were a number of bicyclists heading up NW Thurman to the park today. Most of them seemed to have the more chubby tires (I assume they had mountain bikes or hybrids) but they were having no trouble ascending the hill up to the park.

I saluted their industriousness as I got into my car.

I heard the stay home memo was directed to non-essential personnel only. I have to ask why the city keeps those folks employed at all if they are not essential.

With freezing on the light rail lines, TriMet's trains were stalled at each station this afternoon for 15 to 30 minutes per stop.

Still beats walking and driving-remember to bring food, low blood sugar levels will make you cranky.

Be thankful.

"too bad it wasn't Randy's butt", says my spouse...

So, anyone sighted with their tongue stuck to a lampost yet? It's an opportunity we Portlanders rarely get.

The BikePortland page ( http://bikeportland.org/ ) had posts about homemade bike tire "chains" using zip ties. The only thing is that you need those new-fangled disc brakes on your bike.

Unaffected by cold/etc are the 10% of the Portland workforce in Portland who commute back and forth by bicycle.

Inability to commute by car is actually awesome. Fewer cars on the road !!

Since (for those in cars) it's hard to see those green bike boxes at stoplights .. it's all good. Fewer cars on the road (due to ice) means faster bike commute times!!

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