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Bel Air

Some plow or blow away the snow in Bel Air, as others just have fun with it

Fred Darney of Bel Air and his son, Jonathan, had already been plowing parking lots and driveways in Harford County for about 10 hours when they began plowing outside a law firm along East Lee Street in Bel Air Thursday afternoon.

Darney, 50, said the hours could stretch into days, however, if more snow hit later in the day, as some forecasts were predicting.

"Probably a couple more days, at least, until we get it all cleaned up," he said while sitting in the cab of his plow, with Jonathan, 22, in the passenger seat.

Darney was driving a red Dodge Ram 3500 truck with a yellow blade attached to the front and a salt spreader attached to the rear.

The truck bore the sign of his employer, Bel Air Waterproofing & Remodeling. Darney said his boss has contracts to plow lots and driveways of various businesses around the county.

He said that he and his son began plowing around 2:30 or 3 a.m. Thursday, to allow the snow to build up before they started work.

"They probably had a good six, seven inches on the ground before we started plowing," he said. About a foot of snow had fallen by the time they reached Lee Street around noon Thursday, when the precipitation had changed over to rain and began petering out.

Darney has been plowing for about 20 years.

"Since he was a baby, he's been with me," he said, indicating his son.

Darney said the amount of snow typically drops as he drives from Jarrettsville to Bel Air to Edgewood, by about 1 inch for every 10 miles, to where there is almost "nothing" in Edgewood.

He noted Edgewood received more snow than usual in Thursday's storm, however.

Darney said he has spent up to two weeks plowing during major storms such as the so-called Snowmageddon storms of 2010 and 2011.

"[If] you've got to sleep, that's it," he said. "You pull over and sleep, or you let another guy drive."

Around town

A few people were walking and driving along North Hickory Avenue in Bel Air during the lull in the snowfall Thursday afternoon. Joggers were out, too.

Four-wheel drive Bel Air Police Department vehicles were patrolling the thoroughfare, as were snowplows and civilian vehicles.

David Hankins of the Norrisville area was using a snow blower to clear the sidewalk near the HAR-CO Credit Union at Hickory and Lee streets. The piles of snow were so high along the sides that only the top of the snow blower peeked over.

Hankins said he had been working for a friend, clearing lots and driveways around Bel Air and Abingdon, since 4 a.m. Thursday.

"It's pretty thick so it'll take time," he said of the snow.

Rob Zimmerman, of Bel Air, said the major roads such as Moores Mill Road and Route 22 (Churchville Road) were in good shape.

He had driven up to the 7-Eleven store at Moores Mill and Route 22 earlier, and then parked his car in the Town of Bel Air parking garage on Hickory before walking back home.

"The major roads aren't bad," he said. "There's a little snow, a little wet, but they're passable."

"Get some!" he called to a man who was running along Hickory and then turned up Lee Way.

Zimmerman said he also runs, noting people need exercise "even when it's cold."

Another snow day

Carlos Sanchez, 8, made a snow mountain with his friend, Yoselin Lopez, out of the plentiful snow on the grounds of the Hickory Court Apartments in Bel Air.

Yoselin and Carlos plucked small branches from a nearby evergreen tree and placed them on top of the snow mountain.

Carlos called them "mini" bushes and trees.

"Everything is mini on the mini-mountain," he said.

They, along with their fellow Bel Air Elementary School classmate David Lopez, 9, estimated they were on their eighth or ninth snow day this year.

"They're awesome," Yoselin's brother, David, said of snow days.

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