While Cairo might be surprised to get snowed in, there are certain cities that should be prepared for a few inches of frozen water. Here are the ten cities our readers say suck the most at winter.
10.) Las Vegas
MrTheEngineer says snowstorms in the desert don't go well with gambling:
Seeing as how snow isn't something that generally happens here, when it does snow (once every 5 years or so), it makes a mess. Even a 1/4 inch will cause massive wrecks (no one knows how to drive in the snow, even those who once did have long forgotten).
If we ever got a freak cold spell that dumped more than an inch of snow on the valley we would be so screwed, we have no way of clearing the snow from the roads, and would cause massive delays / issues in the tourism industry.
For those of you who have never heard of Las Vegas, we exist because of tourism...
Suggested By: MrTheEngineer, Photo Credit: Getty Images
marshknute starts with a geography lesson and thinks the great people of Pittsburgh should start believing in snow enought to buy winter tires:
Pittsburgh is located in a geographic region that gets the Western edge of every New England snowstorm, and the Eastern edge of every Ohio snowstorm. While there are few big storms, the constant flurries top off the already slushy roads. People therefore get stuck because "it's not worth buying snow tires if we don't get big storms." It's not like Pittsburgh has the steepest public streets in the country to make your summer tires lose traction more easily.
Then there is the fact that the city doesn't own snowplows (at least I've never seen one anywhere near Carnegie Mellon), so drivers are on their own. To make matters worse, there are very few main roads through the city, and the traffic lights are all synchronized to be red.
Red is the color of the devil.
Suggested By: marshknute, Photo Credit: AP Images
The Motor City doesn't seem to have enough motors to clean the streets, according to shortyoh:
I'm not sure how many plows they have now, but in 1999, well before they went bankrupt, they only had 59 plows for the entire city, and many were broken down. By comparison, Chicago had nearly 13 times as many plows, even after correcting for city area differences....
Detroit's snowfall average is between that of Fargo and Boulder, but their plow fleet in good times barely exceeded that of Nashville.
Suggested By: shortyoh, Photo Credit: AP Images
If there's a chance of getting a dusting of snow on the ground, people start making their mad dash home, causing gridlock. 1/4-inch of snow? Minimum of 2-hour school delays, if school opens at all. Since we don't get snow often enough, we barely have any equipment to plow, de-ice and gravel the roads other than the main highways. If we get a lot more snow than the paltry amount of equipment is available, city basically shuts down.
The secret ingredient calls himself an asshole and recommends getting a Subaru Impreza:
I moved from Anchorage, AK (where I lived for 25 years) to Portland, OR a few years ago, and whenever we get snow or ice here it absolutely floors me how stupid people are. If it's honestly bad enough, I take 15 minutes in the morning and throw on my old studded tires, stick to the back roads, and generally ignore everyone as I speed to my destination at 75 miles an hour.
Yes, I am that asshole in the Impreza with the studded tires ignoring everything.
Suggested By: Audi For Life, Photo Credit: AP Images
Apparently, it's an Armageddon in Tennessee. satalac:
Lifelong Nashvilian here, and I completely agree with this. It becomes Armageddon when the white stuff begins to fall and it turns into a massive game of bumper cars. I tend to get on the trickiest roads to drive on when things get nasty because I know only the more skilled drivers (few and far between) will survive the first section without ditching the car.
Everyone here thinks that 4 wheel drive or all wheel drive will make their vehicle unstoppable in the snow. And they are very correct, they can't stop in the snow and slide into ditches, cars, buildings etc.
Suggested By: ridered777, Photo Credit: AP Images
Dallas is full of drifters. shootemupy2k:
I moved here in November of 2010 from WV so I'm usually not phased by snow and ice. We had a mild snowfall in January of 2011 (less than an inch) during the work week. When I got up that morning, I looked outside and saw the snowfall and didn't think much of it. I bundled up and headed off to work in my RWD V6 Camaro with well used summer tires. I got stuck once on the way in, but it wasn't anything that deflating the rear tires didn't fix.
I remember being utterly flabbergasted when I got to work and the office was completely deserted. It wasn't until I checked my email for the morning that I realized that the office manager had sent out an email notifying everyone that the office was closed due to the treacherous weather conditions.
I would go so far as to say that the people in the city are less prepared for snow and ice than the city itself is.
I bet the Ewings were prepared back in the day.
Suggested By: chrisbattle, Photo Credit: AP Images
4.) Birmingham (United Kingdom)
When I was living in London, I was amazed how fast the whole city got shut down due to 3 inches of snow. The mayor went as far as saying that although London doing nothing for two days is pretty bad for the economy, snow plows are expensive, and it won't snow anyway. Next year, they did it again.
And it looks like Birmingham is no better. Monsterajr:
When it snows they "Grit" (salt/sand) the roads. As it snows harder, they "grit" the roads. When the grit fails, they keep gritting. Eventually someone with a JCB will come out and clear some roads, but not all roads. Someone else will have a piece of 2x6 strapped to the front of their Highlux and call it a plow. Oh and this is for 3 inches of snow...
And just to be clear, even nowadays Heathrow, you know the major Airport in the UK, cannot handle snow of any kind either.
It's true, my plane was delayed there for two hours once because the airport didn't have plows, so the tanker couldn't reach the plane safely enough. It was funny for about five minutes.
Suggested By: Monsterajr, Photo Credit: Getty Images
3.) Washington DC
It just doesn't make any sense in DC. They should know better, as thedriver points out:
Odd since we actually get some snow a few times a year, but each time you'd think it was the snowpocalypse again. Heck we close schools because of forecasted snow!
That said, if you keep going South, it gets worse.
I guess you just have to keep going south a little longer.
Suggested By: thedriver, Photo Credit: AP Images
It's the US equivalent of London according to My X-type is too a real Jaguar:
Atlanta, the number of inches of snow equals the number of days the city will be shut down.
Go get your bread, eggs, milk and toilet paper.
Suggested By: My X-type is too a real Jaguar, Photo Credit: AP Images
This one wasn't even a contest, as SouthboundPachyderm explains.
I also live in Seattle (and also lived in the NE) and it's the worst prepared city. Saying it's not bad because "we had a couple of inches and nobody was on roads" is not a good indicator of a city that is prepared for snow - it's an indicator of a city that shut down because it was completely unprepared for it.
We have steep hills here and yet the city has completely inadequate snow removal services and, as a result, the city basically shuts down every time we get a couple of inches - even if it's not particularly icy like it was this year. I guess you could argue that we're prepared because everyone realizes it'll be a clusterfuck ahead of time and just shuts down their business or calls out as opposed to forgetting that we're not prepared and trying to carry on business as usual but it's not a great argument in my opinion.
Suggested By: phydeaux, Photo Credit: AP Images
Welcome back to Answers of the Day - our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!
Top Photo Credit: Getty Images