Parked RV and loud alert siren draw complaints in Coaldale
CHRIS PARKER/TIMES NEWS Coaldale resident Lucille Colburn, right, talks to council about a large recreational vehicle owned by Paul Coppie, standing. Council members Steve Tentylo, Tom Keerans and Nancy Lorchak are seated behind Coppie.
A Coaldale Borough Council candidate needs to find another place to keep his roomy recreational vehicle.
Resident Lucille Colburn of 236 Coal St. attended a public council meeting Tuesday to ask what could be done about a very long recreational vehicle that is usually parked at the corner of Phillips and East streets. Colburn said it's difficult for drivers to see oncoming traffic when they are entering the intersection, and often they must pull into the crossing to be able to see.
Further, she said, she's concerned about pedestrians crossing the street there for the same reason.
"I'm concerned because I lived in Philly, we lived on Roosevelt, and I saw accident after accident after accident. And, being a nurse, I responded to a lot of them. I don't want to go down the hill and respond to (an accident involving a family member)," she said. "It's a safety issue."
Council candidate Paul Coppie, who owns the vehicle, sprang to his defense. He told Colburn he has a right to park on the street and that it was council's fault for enacting new parking rules several years ago that forced him to stop parking the vehicle in front of his East Street home.
"Complain to them," he told Colburn as he pointed to council.
Council President Susan Solt said the problem has been an ongoing one and that the borough may have to paint traffic lines at the intersection to prevent anyone from parking too close to the corners. She advised having council's Streets Committee study the matter.
In other business, resident Brittany Colburn (it was unclear whether she and Lucille Colburn are related), of 254 Sixth St., complained that the alert siren near the Coaldale Complex is so loud it will harm peoples' hearing. Colburn read from the research she did on decibel levels, and said the siren often goes off in the early morning hours, disrupting sleep.
"It's ridiculously loud," she said.
Mayor Richard Corkery agreed, saying it's time to scrap the siren.
Council took up the matter last year after hearing numerous complaints. The 30-year-old siren, installed in the 1970s by the federal government as a civil defense measure, was designed to emit a variety of alerts for different emergencies. However, it has for some time apparently been stuck on a shrill "attack" warning sound.
Council has considered dismantling the device. However, Fire Chief Richard Marek opposes any plans to get rid of the siren, saying it's needed to alert firefighters and the community to emergencies. Not all firefighters have pagers, which cost about $500 each, he has said.
Council last spring agreed to have Martin Electric of Walker Township look at the siren to see if the company could fix it so it would not be so loud. However, Councilman David Yelito said Tuesday, "we never heard back from them."
In other matters Tuesday, council agreed to sell an old police vehicle to the highest bidder, Asian Motors of Chicago, Illinois, for $5,219. Asian was among six bidders.
Council also approved the inclusion of a killed-in-action memorandum of understanding to the police pension plan.
Council also approved the sale by the Schuylkill County Tax Claim Bureau of a house at 250 W. Water St. to a Ms. Ricardo for $900. Ricardo said she plans to bring the house up to code and move in.