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December 14, 2017 Newsletter

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NEWS FROM THE FIRE DEPARTMENT
Clearing Snow from Fire Hydrants

When winter is at its coldest, you may want to spend most of your time inside. However, it's important to keep an eye on what's happening outdoors, too.  Wintry weather can create fire safety hazards, such as ice or heavy snowfall that can obstruct fire hydrants.  You can help reduce the risk by keeping fire hydrants accessible and clear of ice and snow.

Why It Matters

In an emergency, every second counts.  Fire  hydrants that are blocked, concealed, or difficult to access due to snow or ice and impede emergency fire response.

Fire trucks carry a limited amount of water, so one of the first tasks upon arriving at a fire is to locate a water supply from the nearest hydrant.  Hydrants covered in snow can be difficult to locate, and uncovering them can waste valuable time needed during fighting the fire.  Keeping them clear can mean easier access to water and more time doing what really matters -- fighting the fire.

How to Keep Fire Hydrants Clear

In addition to removing snow and debris covering the hydrant itself, North Royalton Fire Department recommends clearing a 3 foot area around the hydrant for easier access.  We also suggest maintaining a shoveled path from the street, sidewalk or driveway to the fire hydrant so that it is visible from the road and firefighters can easily access it.

Who Should Clear Hydrants

Although there are a few hard and fast rules concerning who should clear hydrants, it's generally considered the responsibility of the residents occupying property near a hydrant.  Consider helping elderly friends, neighbors, or those with medical conditions to keep their fire hydrants clear.

The winter can be a time for enjoying the great outdoors with friends and family.  Help keep your home safe from winter fire hazards by ensuring your fire hydrants are clear and readily accessible in an emergency.

Stay Warm!

    
NEWS FROM THE POLICE DEPARTMENT

Holiday Drinking: 
Keep It Safe

Every holiday season, people have to deal with the increased pressures and stress that the holidays place upon most of us.  Whether we're traveling to be with family or doing our last-minute gift buying, most people feel  under pressure during the holidays.

As you might suspect, the holiday season then becomes one of the most dangerous times of the year for alcohol-related accidents and death.  There are several reasons for this:
  • More people drink during the holidays due to numerous parties and other festivities.
  • Many holiday drinkers don't drink often, so they have a lower alcohol tolerance.  These people often underestimate their level of impairment and sometimes even drive when they shouldn't.  When arrested for drunk driving, these people often show a relatively low alcohol content yet they are very intoxicated.
  • Problem drinkers and alcoholics love the holidays because there are more social occasions to drink.  They say they feel more "normal" because the occasional drinkers are also more likely to abuse alcohol during this time of year.  Consequently, people with alcoholism drink and drive more frequently.  Unlike occasional drinkers, they have a high tolerance for alcohol and can consume large amounts before showing effects.
  • The holidays are busy and stressful.  People are hurrying more than normal and winter road conditions make driving more dangerous.  Add alcohol to this scenario and you have a recipe for disaster.
Avoid Alcohol-Related Problems
You can make your holidays happier and safer by following these five simple tips for consuming alcohol in moderation throughout the season:
  1. Just say no. Resist the pressure to drink or serve alcohol at every social event
    Just because it's there does not require that you drink it.  There is no law stating that alcohol is a necessary ingredient for holiday cheer.  Don't feel like you have to drink just because your host offers--it's not rude to choose a non-alcoholic beverage instead.
  2. Offer nonalcoholic beverages.  If you want to serve alcohol to your guests, offer nonalcoholic beverages as well.  Make your guest feel as comfortable choosing a nonalcoholic beverage as he would choosing alcohol.  You can do this by putting nonalcoholic drinks in a prominent, easily accessible place and by asking guests what they would like to drink, instead of pointing them to the bar or handing them an alcoholic drink when they arrive.
  3. Designate a driver before the party begins.  If you or your friends are going to a party and plan to use alcohol, decide in advance who will be the designated driver.  Decide that drinking and driving in not an option.
  4. Choose your number ahead of time.  If you are going to drink, do what responsible drinkers do.  Decide ahead of time how many drinks you will have and stick to it.  A blood alcohol content chart can help you understand the relationship between the amount of drinks, blood alcohol content and level of impairment.
  5. Remember that alcohol is a complement, not the purpose.  Sometimes we lose sight of a holiday celebration or party and see it as a chance or opportunity to drink socially.  While it is such an opportunity, the main purpose of a party is to have fun with people you know.  Drinking is always an option and optional, and it is as much ass a choice as it is a responsibility.  Keep this in mind throughout the night.  If you find yourself going overboard, find a friend or loved one, and explain you'd like to go home.  You can stop yourself before you go too far, you just need to choose to do so.

You can ensure your holiday season is a relaxing, enjoyable and peaceful one as long as you remember to drink in moderation, and encourage your loved ones to do the same.  Don't become another drunk statistic, and try to remember the reasons people celebrate at this time of the year.

 A friendly reminder from the North Royalton Police Department



NEWS FROM THE DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC SAFETY



Do not let criminals be your "scrooge" this holiday. Take a few precautions when you venture out to do Christmas shopping and you will "take a bite out of crime".  

Personal Safety at Malls

The threat of physical assault does not necessarily increase along with crowds that herald the holiday season. It is when you are far from the crowd, in distant reaches of parking lots or other isolated areas of the mall that you are most vulnerable. To protect yourself:
  • Always try to walk to and from your vehicle with another person.  If you are shopping alone, consider walking near other shoppers in the parking lot.  
  • If shopping alone and leaving at night -- particularly if you are carrying several bundles -- ask a security officer to accompany you to your car. Most malls will provide that service.  
  • Inside a mall, avoid darkened hallways and other backroom areas, especially near closing time.  
  • Avoid using restrooms that are tucked away in a back area of a mall concourse or department. If you can, find a restroom near the mall's food court or other well-trafficked area. And always accompany your child to the restroom.
ATM Safety

To protect yourself, handle your bank card with the same prudence you would cash or credit cards and keep it in a safe place. Memorize your PIN code so you won't have to write it on your card or a piece of paper, and carry it in your purse or wallet. And keep your PIN to yourself -- if others are nearby waiting to use the ATM, don't let them see which buttons you press.   

More ATM advice:
  • Choose a bank with an ATM located in a highly visible, well-lighted area.   
  • If you must withdraw money from an ATM after dark, have someone accompany you. Also, try not to make large cash withdrawals. If you see anyone loitering near the machine who looks or acts suspicious, walk away.   
  • Minimize time spent at the ATM by having your card in your hand and resisting the temptation to count the money after it has been dispensed.   
  • While using an ATM, look around from time to time and be aware of what's going on around you. If anything suspicious happens, immediately cancel your transaction and leave.  
  • Never leave your receipt in the machine.  Also, keep your receipt so you can check them against your monthly bank statements.    
TIPS TO KEEP YOUR HOME SAFE WHILE TRAVELING OVER THE HOLIDAYS

With the holidays upon us many families are about to hit the road to visit families and loved ones. Take some of these simple steps to protect your home while you are away.  

Take a critical look at your home and look for security lapses. Once you discover a way inside think like a burglar. Look for quick things to grab (like the iPad on the counter or the checkbook on the desk). If you leave your car in the garage, don't hang the keys on the hook by the door. They can just load up your own car and drive away. Rethink your hiding places, like that jewelry or cash in your sock drawer. Everyone does it, and burglars know that.  

Keep a trusted neighbor in the loop about your vacation plans. While you are away, they can keep an eye out for flyers and papers accumulating on your front stoop that scream, "No one has been home for days". Other red flags for an empty house are a snow covered driveway. Ask a neighbor to shovel your drive and sidewalk while you are away.  

Don't put out your trash too early. Also consider that those boxes from your new TV, computer or tablet aren't trash as much as advertisements for the great new gadgets just inside your door. Consider taking those items straight to a recycling center before you leave. Putting out trash too early can also be a beacon for burglars, as are empty trash cans sitting on the curb.  

The reaction when you are going away is to close up your house like a tomb. Of course you should lock all the doors and window. It's the blinds and curtains you should leave open. It may seem like a good idea to keep anyone from seeing inside your house, but you should consider leaving them open if you usually leave them open. Burglars notice details like these.  

Don't just put lights on timers. Burglars tend to case neighborhoods so they know exactly when to strike, and which house is likely to be empty. It is a good idea to not only invest in light timers, but TV timers as well. You can set it for the times you typically watch TV as well as random times during the day to make the house look lived in.  

Another important tip is to make sure that your children, who are excited to be going on a vacation do not post any details that you will be away on any social media site. That can be an open invitation for a burglar.  

Notify your local Police Department that you will be away and request an extra watch or special attention to your residence.  

Taking a little extra time to evaluate your home security prior to taking that family trip can help to avoid any unwanted surprises when you come home.





ENGINEERING DEPARTMENT UPDATE 
December 7, 2017

Royalton Road WM Replacement – Phase 2:

Plans were approved by Cleveland Water to replace approximately 1,940 LF of 12” watermain between State Road and Prince Charles Drive along the north side of Royalton Road.  This project is being funded 100% by the CWD.  The project will be bid early next year due to the winter months approaching.

Royalton Road Widening (Spruce Run Drive to York Road):

95% final plans have been delivered to the City for a final review for this roadway widening project.  Final utility coordination will occur at a meeting scheduled for December 18th with Cuyahoga County and their consultant, HNTB.  This project is scheduled to begin construction in 2018.

Abbey Road Bridge Replacement (near Sprague Road):

Cuyahoga County is planning to replace the beams on this bridge deck around May 1, 2018.  This will require the bridge to be closed for a period of approximately 6 months while this work is being performed.  A detour route has been approved and will be posted prior to construction.  This detour route will be utilizing Sprague Road, W. 130th Street and Albion Road to detour around construction.  More details to follow as this project start draws near.

Pinestream Subdivision (Phase 7):

The final phase of this subdivision has been constructed and approved.  Homes will begin construction very shortly for the newly created 16 lots between Hedgebrook Drive and Waterbridge Drive.

Meadowview Subdivision (Abbey Road):

A new 37 lot subdivision has been approved by the City of North Royalton on Abbey Road just south of Pinebrook Estates.  Final plans are being reviewed for compliance with conditions agreed upon (at the Planning Commission) and City Code.  Construction is estimated to start sometime in early 2018.

REMINDER:

With the fall/winter seasons upon us, it is important to remember your responsibility as a homeowner to keep all ditches, swales and drainage ways on your property “free and clear”.  Failure to keep these areas unobstructed can result in flooding in areas not intended to flood.  Remove leaves, twigs and garbage from ditches that may obstruct the flow of storm water so that the water can travel along its intended path.

The City of North Royalton appreciates your help in keeping North Royalton a beautiful community!


NEWS FROM THE SERVICE DEPARTMENT


Keep the Roads Safe For All! Here are a few reminders of winter road hazards to consider for everyone's safety:

FIRE HYDRANTS
  • Keep fire hydrants clean and free of snow build-up.  This will assist the Fire Department locating hydrants, if an emergency develops.
CULVERTS & CATCH BASINS
  • Keep driveway culverts and catch basins free of debris and ice-build-up to prevent flooding  during periods of thaw.
CHILDREN'S SAFETY
  • Make sure your children do not play in any large piles of snow located near the roadway.  These mountains of snow look appealing to the children, but can be very dangerous when the plows are pushing snow.
SNOW REMOVAL REGISTRATION
  • All private snow removal contractors are reminded they must register with the City Building Department prior to engaging in the activity of removing snow on property other than what they own or occupy.
REFUSE
  • Please do not set your garbage cans in the road, as the plows must work around them, crossing the centerline of the road in the process.  Refuse containers should be placed as close to the curb/berm as practical.
SIDEWALKS
  • With winter upon us, please make an effort to keep your sidewalks free of snow.  For safety reasons, children walking to school/school buses, as well as adults, need to be able to use the sidewalks.  Be neighborly!  Volunteer to shovel snow for elderly and disabled residents who can't clear their walks.
PARKING
  • Do not park vehicles in a cul-de-sac, especially those with landscaped centers.  This makes it impossible to properly clear the snow from these areas.
DEPOSITING SNOW OR ICE IN THE STREET
  • Snow left out in the road by homeowners or private snow plowers is a road hazard.  We have all come upon this situation where we are driving along and come across a wall of snow trailing out of a driveway across the road.  Snow should never be plowed onto or across the roadway.  The proper way to plow a driveway is to start at the mouth of the drive and plow in.  There should be a designated area to store snow in your yard.
  • Another danger is when snow is pushed across the road and piled on the berm.  As the winter progresses these piles work their way out into the road.  This hard-packed snow can push a snow plow across the centerline into on-coming traffic.  All homeowners and snowplow contractors should be aware that they can be cited for placing obstructions, including snow, on the roadway.
  • If you hire a snowplow contractor and they are leaving snow in the roadway or piling snow in cul-de-sacs or on the berm, please inform them of the inherent problems and dangers these actions can cause.  By working together we can make this a safe winter season.
 
RECOMMENDED PLACEMENT OF SNOW
  • In order to reduce the amount of snow entering your driveway from snow plowing operations, it is recommended that while cleaning your driveway apron, as much snow as possible be placed on the side of your driveway away from the direction of the snow plow (in other words, the right side of your driveway as you face the street) and make a pocket on the left side of your driveway.  In so doing, snow accumulation on the plow will drop into that pocket and the potential for large quantities of snow being deposited into the drive apron is reduced.
Holiday Schedule

Christmas Day 2017: Monday, Dec. 25, 2017
Service will NOT occur on Monday, December 25.

Service will be delayed one day during the rest of the week (Monday will move to Tuesday; Tuesday will move to Wednesday; Wednesday will move to Thursday; Thursday will move to Friday; and Friday will move to Saturday).

New Year's Day 2018: Monday, Jan. 1, 2018
Service will NOT occur on Monday, January 1.

Service will be delayed one day during the rest of the week (Monday will move to Tuesday; Tuesday will move to Wednesday; Wednesday will move to Thursday; Thursday will move to Friday; and Friday will move to Saturday). Rumpke will return to its regular collection schedule the following week.   

View Rumpke's 
holiday schedule to see a complete list of days that impact your service.   

THE RECYCLE YARD WILL BE OPEN SATURDAY DECEMBER 23RD AND SATURDAY DECEMBER 30TH FROM 8 AM – 3 PM   

2017 North Royalton Recycle Guide and Special Wastes Brochure
 CLICK HERE    

Don't forget to have your trash
 AT THE CURB BY 7:00 a.m.    

Please remember to set your trash and recycle carts out the evening before or by 7:00 a.m.on your collection day - rain, snow or shine! Routes can change at any time and so can your pick up time.

NEWS FROM THE OFFICE ON AGING-SENIOR CENTER

Don’t forget to stop by our local Salvation Army Service Unit Red Kettle at the North Royalton Giant Eagle.  We’re on the home stretch, Saturday, December 23rd will be our
last day. 
             

Monday, December 18th UH Dietician Julie Wise will be here at 10:00 AM to discuss “Brain Health”. We hope you’ll join us.

Tired of being cooped up with the snow, join us Wednesday December 20th at 1:00 PM for the holiday movie “Christmas in Connecticut” starring Barbara Stanwyck and Dennis Morgan. (Please note there is no luncheon for this presentation.)

 The Office on Aging and Senior Center will be Closed on Friday, December 22nd and December 25th for the Christmas Holiday and December 29th and Jan 1st for the New Year Holiday. The Office on Aging staff and volunteers would like to wish everyone a very safe and blessed holiday season!

      

The North Royalton Office on Aging has activities for anyone over age 55. Look for our calendar on the web under Aging and Human Services.  We are open Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm and we are located at 13500 Ridge Road in the Deaconess-Perry Senior Apartment Building (South side entrance). If you have questions or comments, contact Debra Burrows at 440-582-6333.

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December Calendar
December 19, 2017:
Council Meeting - Council Chambers - 7:00 p.m. 
December 20, 2017:
Planning Commission - Council Chambers - 7:00 p.m.