SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – On Monday, 22News showed you bus stops along Sumner Avenue in Springfield that were piled high with snow; a situation many PVTA bus riders say is getting dangerous.
Raul Rosario rides the PVTA every day. “I have to stand in the middle of the road. You know, cars are trying to rush to get to work and things like that, so sometimes it’s a close call; cars almost hitting you and stuff like that,” he said.
Wednesday, 22News took our cameras to other parts of the city to find more snow-filled bus stops, including one on Fort Pleasant Avenue.
22News found another on the corner of Mill and Maple Streets, where snow banks are also narrowing the busy street corner; making it even more dangerous if someone were out on the street waiting for the bus.
The PVTA says that snow is supposed to be cleared by whoever’s property is butting up against that bus stop.
Springfield code enforcement deputy director David Cotter told 22News that his department enforces snow removal on sidewalks that run to the front door and back of homes, while police enforce keeping sidewalks free of snow in front of homes.
Cotter told 22News that the city’s ordinance requiring those sidewalks get shoveled out, however, says nothing about bus stops.
“There isn’t any clear-cut city ordinance that enforces… in the 20 years that I’ve been here, we’ve never enforced a bus stop not being shoveled out,” Cotter said.
Cotter also said the city is responsible for clearing sidewalks at roughly 400 locations throughout Springfield.
The office of Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno says that since 22News brought the issue to their attention, they are are now working on a plan with the Hampden County Sheriff’s Department to try and make the city’s bus stops safer for passengers.
The PVTA told 22News they currently have 1,700 bus stops in 24 communities in the Pioneer Valley.