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Published: Thursday, 2/15/2007

At Level 3, Perrysburg traffic near 0

Perrysburg police Sgt. J.D. Justus stops traffic on State Rt. 25 so a semi that had been stuck can back up and go on its way. Perrysburg police Sgt. J.D. Justus stops traffic on State Rt. 25 so a semi that had been stuck can back up and go on its way.

Traffic in Perrysburg was heavier than usual yesterday morning.

Not on the streets, of course, but on sidewalks and in driveways.

When northwest Ohio woke up to county-imposed Level 3 snow emergencies, which closes all roadways to nonemergency personnel, most of Perrysburg seemingly stayed home to dig itself out from Tuesday's heavy snow.

Messy driving conditions from snowdrifts and ice kept most people away from busy thoroughfares like State Rt. 25 and West South Boundary Street.

But the sidewalks and driveways that line the town's streets were filled with people pushing shovels and snow blowers.

"I didn't think it would be this quiet," Perrysburg police Sgt. J.D. Justus said. "But I guess people are staying put, and that's a good thing."

Expecting a weather-induced spate of auto accidents and rescue efforts, Sergeant Justus invited The Blade to ride along during his shift yesterday.

But from about 6 to 10 a.m., the sergeant said Perrysburg police assisted just three cars and one tractor-trailer rig - all of which were stuck in snow.

Most of the road traffic consisted of police cars and plow trucks, while many local businesses and restaurants were closed, including Starbucks at Levis Commons.

"All of our officers were bummin' during roll call because that's where we get our coffee," Sergeant Justus said.

The sergeant attributed the quiet morning to people heeding Wood County Sheriff Mark Wasylyshyn's advice and staying home.

"I'd say 75 percent of [why there was no traffic] was that a Level 3 was declared," Sergeant Justus said. "That's why it's so good when the sheriff calls a Level 3 because otherwise things get so congested that we can't get the roads cleared."

Some of those who were driving felt compelled to offer the sergeant an excuse for being on the road.

A doctor stopped before turning onto State Rt. 65 to explain he had patients to see.

A man in Middleton Township reasoned he was plowing driveways and small streets for the elderly.

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