Public Using App To Submit Photos Of Streets Needing A Plow

By: Lauren Squires Email
By: Lauren Squires Email

Light snow fell on the metro Friday, coating an already thick snowfall from last week. Meanwhile, cleanup crews continue to address problem streets across the area. Omaha is using technology to help clear up the problem.

They’re busy inside Charlie Graham Body and Service. “Mostly we're getting collision repair cars in.” Jim Champion says many people are coming in with damage from the ice and snow. “The steering wheel might be off center or it might be pulling one way or another or you might get kind of a wobble in your steering wheel.”

Your vehicle might be alright, but what if your streets aren't? The city has an app that allows you to take a photo. Then you can submit the photo. It gives the city an exact idea what the street looks like and gives you progress about where they are with the plowing.

It's something Nick Blanchard of Omaha thinks is helpful. “I'm all for using apps like that to make public services more responsive. I think it allows resources to be deployed where there is a more of a need.”

We found a handful of reports filed. One near 48th Avenue and Cuming the city marked as “in progress” and the street was clean. Another submitted near 60th and Pacific, an abandoned car, was still parked on the side of the road, plowed in. But we found one spot that wasn't addressed, a photo was submitted near 50th and Lafayette where someone was injured over the weekend. It didn't look plowed, but the city marked it as “in progress.”

“The best thing we can do is to go back and continue to treat those areas until Mother Nature helps us out here,” said Scott McIntyre with Omaha’s Street Maintenance Department.

In the meantime, Mother Nature does what it wants and Blanchard finds a way around it. “Mainly, I've had to just go down the hill the whole time since then.”

If you'd like to download the app to your phone, just search city of Omaha in your app store. If you don't have a smartphone, you can always call the Mayor’s Hotline at 402-444-5555.

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