Thursday, Jan 18, 2018
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Snow, bitter cold slap Sylvania; more closings today


Zack Thomas walks with his dog Trevor, as his sister Sarah and a friends trail on empty downtown Sylvania streets on Monday.

The Blade/Natalie Trusso Cafarello
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Frigid temperatures and heavy snow put the Sylvania area on pause on Monday, with closings of city and township offices, Sylvania Schools, and Olander Park.

Lucas County authorities declared a Level 3 snow emergency, which meant motorists on Monday were told to stay off the roads.

The forecast of temperatures well below 0 today resulted in Sylvania Schools and Lourdes University canceling classes again today. Olander Park also will be closed today. Lucas County authorities reinstated Level 3 today, which closed more government offices, including Sylvania Township's. The township trustees' scheduled meeting today has been postponed until 4 p.m. Wednesday. 

The weather on Monday and today resulted in a change in trash pickup. There was no refuse collection Monday, nor will there be any today. The city said the routes normally collected on Monday would not be collected again until next Monday. The Tuesday through Friday routes, however, will be collected this week, one day later than normal.

City Service Director Kevin Aller said only essential city employees worked on Monday, including road clearing crews and police. Road clearing continued throughout the day Mondahy.

Gregory Huffman, Sylvania Township public works manager, was one of a few people working in a closed township office Monday. He said township road crews have been working 24 hours, in 12 hour shifts, clearing roads since New Year's Day with the exception of Saturday.We have maintained five plow trucks and cleared the residential areas throughout the storm, and highway county maintenance has deployed trucks for main artillery streets, he said. A township employee since 1989, he could not recall a storm as this in at the past 10 years.

Sylvania Township Police officials said on Monday that there were no vehicle incidents to report. However, icy road conditions on U.S. 23 resulted in a semi trailer truck to jackknife just past the Monroe Street overpass and in other accidents further north on U.S. 23 in Michigan. The accident in Sylvania occurred at about 11:30 a.m. when a northbound truck slid into the median, with the cab still in the left passing lane. Sylvania police kept traffic flowing in the right lane while crews are worked to clear the accident.

The city’s downtown area resembled a ghost town through the day as businesses remained closed. A hot spot for sledding on Northview High School’s hill was missing children and adults.  

Some people, though, did venture out on Monday. An employee for LA Fitness in Sylvania Township said there were about 10 cars in the parking lot throughout the day on Monday. 

City of Sylvania resident Sarah Thomas, 24, took the opportunity to take photos and walk with her friends on empty downtown city streets.

“I don’t normally shoot in cold weather but I like to take the winter as a challenge and it makes beautiful pictures," she said.

Her brother Zack, 23, walking their dog Trevor, had his beard covered in icicles. He admitted he just performed some back flips in the snow.

Mark Wolniewicz, 29, and his wife Cassandra used the packed snow on Sunday night to create a snowman in their front yard. It took two times of hand-shoveling to clear their driveway.

"Everyone on our street helps out in clearing the walkways," she said.

“It wasn’t heavy, but there was a lot of it,” Mr. Wolniewicz said.

Contact Natalie Trusso Cafarello at: 419-206-0356, or, or on Twitter @natalietrusso. 

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