Today, January 24, 2014, is a snow day in Austin. Schools, government offices, libraries, and some businesses are closed. Many people, including Bill, are working from home instead of going to their offices. The First Street Bridge was practically deserted at 8:45 AM when I took these photos. On most workday mornings, bridge traffic is still backed up with morning commuters at that time, but not today.
Downtown Austin hasn’t seen this kind of weather since the Blizzard of 2011. We had less snow this time, but more ice. Today’s driving was treacherous on area bridges, elevated highways and flyovers. This morning I watched as a city maintenance truck distributed salt/ash on the First Street Bridge. The truck drove down the right lane, then actually backed up in the middle lane for the entire length of the bridge before proceeding forwards again in the left lane. Cars were sliding around to get out of the way during that backup maneuver. Fortunately, there were no accidents. There’s a perfect example of why you don’t want to drive around here when it’s icy.
I have not ventured out today except to open our balcony door. Everything looks cold and slippery out there. I heard that even our neighborhood bulldog, Elvis, fell flat on his already-flat little face when he waddled outside this morning.
This storm is being called “Snowpocalypse”—a reference to Austin’s two-year Mopac traffic improvement project, affectionately known as “Mopaclypse. Online sites are buzzing today with weather-related pictures. My favorite is 8 Horrifying Photos of Austin’s Snow Day Snowpoaclypse 2014.
Oh, will we survive until the temperatures get back into the 70s…in two days?