Chicago cops have to fight snow as well as bad street guys


Without 4-wheel drive, officers need shovels and help*

This two-day snow experience has added more challenges for the too few Chicago Police Department (CPD) officers trying to keep the streets safe. 

Not only were they fighting to get through the unplowed streets but when the City purchased the first new Chevy Tahoes for CPD, they neglected to purchase the 4-wheel option. According to City sources, that policy has been changed. But, in the mean time, they may need a lot of help from residents.

An example of that took place at Huron and Hoyne in the 12th District, as reported by Julie Sherman. 


Bob Fioretti

"This is Chicago so it should be no surprise that we get lots of snow.  What is surprising is that for the second year in a row, this mayor was not ready for a storm. Our side streets are horrific and we will be dealing with the fallout for days. Now the snow is packed on the side streets and salt is not going to help – ask any plow driver," says 2nd Ward Alderman Bob Fioretti, who is also a Mayoral candidate. 

"We need a seasoned professional running Streets and Sanitation so that we avoid this kind of situation in the future. It is unacceptable and Chicagoans should be upset." Mayor Emanuel named Charles Williams Commissioner of Streets and Sanitation in October 2012. Williams whose background with the CPD for 34 years, then Merchandise Mart Properties for four years, was in security.

According to Officer John Estrada, in CPD News Affairs, the City's Fleet Management and Facility Department (FFM) maintains CPD's station facilities including their parking lots. With vehicles in the parking lots 24/7 and the capricious swirling winds, plowing became impossible, he said. 

However, a report from the 14th District, 2150 N. California, says that they didn't get plowed until Monday morning, after they put in a call. When the plow showed up, they did a once around and was going to leave until a Lieutenant insisted that they stay until they did the cleanup properly. 

Attempts to reach a FFM spokesperson have gone unanswered.

One question is how much time and money are wasted when Chicago purchasing and services are done incorrectly and/or inefficiently? Perhaps more importantly, what impact are these bad decisions and inadequate services having on public and police safety?

Photo courtesy of Julie Sherman




Pot calling kettle...

maybe Fioretti should get in his car and drive his ward. The portion of the ward in and around Ukranian Village is still impassable in places with several streets yet to be touched by a plow. Still waiting for a real contender to show up for the mayoral race...

The line that "they neglected

The line that "they neglected to purchase the 4-wheel option" is not really true. CPD has long had a requirement that all of its marked units must be pursuit-rated. At the time that the Tahoe contract was awarded, there were no pursuit-rated SUVs with all-wheel drive - the Tahoe was available as a Special Service vehicle and all-wheel drive, but not with a pursuit rating. This resulted in 2wd Tahoes with Goodyear RSAs and that adds up to snow performance that is no better than any other 2wd vehicle on non-snow tires. Newer marked units have similar tires, but are AWD, as they are Ford Explorers (sorry, "Utility Interceptor" but no one calls them that) and this version (the police vehicle) is available with, and purchased with, all-wheel drive. As for who selects the vehicles, the vehicles are specced and purchased using the same mechanisms used for other city vehicles. Fleet creates the specs with CPD input and Procurement handles the bid and award process.

This is absolutely absurd,

This is absolutely absurd, now this time to get this person who pretends to be the mayor out of office, yes this Chicago we get alot of snow, and our City needs to be prepared, and I am tired of the foolery and we as the residents continously turning our cheek, to this crook

a quick fact check

im sure you already did this quick google research but according to the chicago police this is why they didn't buy 4 wheel drive vehicles. the cpd selected the vehicles not the "city" and money was not a factor in the decision making according to the CPD. "These are police-designed vehicles," Weis continued. "We didn't look at the four-wheel drive capability when we went to replace this fleet because these have been tested by numerous agencies across the United States and most of the agencies we talked to use them in the snow. They do fairly well in the snow."

Thanks David for doing the

Thanks David for doing the additional research on that one. My understanding was that they were more recently purchased vehicles. But I was not on the scene for that one. Does make me wonder where the locations were where "They do fairly well in snow" and what "fairly well" meant.

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