Snow blow: School canceled in Anchorage, as snow piles up, and some power and 911 service is out in the MatSu

An obscene amount of snow has piled up in Anchorage. Photo credit: Bob Shem

The Anchorage School District decided the roads are not safe enough to have everyone trying to get to school on Wednesday, and thus another “snow day” has been called for Anchorage schools.

Mayor Dave Bronson of Anchorage expressed his disappointment about the school closures in a press release: “I’m really disappointed that schools will be closed for another day. Street maintenance crews have been working 24/7 to get the roads cleared after a week of record-breaking snowfall. We are in constant communication with ASD throughout the day and provide them with frequent updates on the snowplowing operations. Ultimately, it is their decision, and we will continue working to get residential areas cleared so schools can open again, and buses can transport students safely.”

On Tuesday night, more than 1,440 customers in the Mat-Su Valley were without power. All 911 lines were down in the Mat-Su and people were asked to phone in emergencies to 907-459-6800.

In just five days, Anchorage has received about half of the amount of snow that it gets on average during an entire winter. On Wednesday, expected high wind and snow mixed with rain could mean more downed trees and another round of power outages for Anchorage.

Although most of the power is on in Anchorage, that may change when the 25-mph wind arrives.

As of Tuesday, Anchorage street maintenance crews had hauled approximately 3,000 loads of snow in five days. During an average winter, crews haul about 6,000 loads for the entire season.

The city is responsible for snowplowing 1,281 miles of roadways and approximately 200 miles of sidewalks and trails. The city’s arterial roads are plowed first, then collector roads, and then residential areas.

The municipality has also started to help clear some of the state-maintained roads in Anchorage, as the Alaska Department of Transportation was not able to keep up.


  1. Are we becoming Wussies? What the heck kind of call is this from the school district! One of many reasons not to hire a superintendent from Texas. I was all over north, east and west Anchorage today and most roads are plowed and passable.I say passable because I do question the decisions of some of the plow drivers. I did not see one single sidewalk plow out, though. Did they have the day off or was it a holiday?

    • It’s not about being Wussies, it’s a liability issue. Also, many of the bus drivers are new and it’s not a good idea to have newbies learning to drive a large bus in snow and ice with a bus full of kids.

    • Have you driven the main road threw eagle river? The first round of snow it was 3 days before a plow came threw! Second round of snow,,,,it’s now another 3 days and still no plow! What a disgrace! I have been here most of my life and have never ever seen this kind of incompetence. Where are all of these new plows and trucks???? Pathetic.

      • You know Lori, maybe you should invest a little time and look at the maps on the Muni website. It clearly delineates that the Old Glenn Hwy and Eagle River and the Loop roads ARE state roads. This mess has been around for the longest time and has made it a crap shoot for clearing most years. It was really time for the state and the Muni to get together. I have live here a very good while and remember washboard at the intersection by Jitters and Fred Meyer after snow dumps, as well as neighborhoods being plowed while the main roads were still a mess due to state ownership.

  2. But, but, but, how has all this snow affected the HOMELESS?

    To judge from their headlines on Monday, the ADN appears to believe that that is the most important concern surrounding the recent dumpings of snow, and the poor response to it by state and municipal road crews.

        • The $420,000 turd houses will terminate those “white turds” according to Constant when the libtards approve the 12 million needed to build them and millions annually to stock them with needles and paraphernalia to keep them up to snuff.

    • So, no relevant comment to this article then, just an attempt to hijack the direction of the original conversation. thanks for being useless.

    • I don’t pay for ADN, but when I buy lunch I’ll sometimes glance at the headline.
      You are right though – every single day this week their top story above the fold was about ‘the homeless’ or their new preferred PC term ‘the unhoused’.

      Funny how leftists keep coming up with new names for various group of ‘victims’, and after 10 or 20 years they have to find new terms because the old ones through general usage became ‘derogatory’. Doesn’t matter if we are talking about racial/ethnic groups, homeless, immigrants, the mentally retarded, homosexuals or the physically handicapped. The terms we used 20 years ago are now ‘forbidden’ because they want to police and manipulate our language in order to influence how we think.

  3. Too bad we didn’t spend that hotel buying money on more plows and plow operators. I guess it’s better to take care of the homeless than the home owner. The assembly owns this mess.

    • C’mon, now. We’ll always have homeless folks, unless we can figure them in the social safety net, which is very difficult to consider in a place like Alaska, unlike our fellow northerners in a distant neighborhood. No, I don’t mean the uncivilized roughnecks across the Bering Straits … consider the residents of Hokkaido and Finland that plan for the folks that end up in dire straits, for one reason or another. Heck, it doesn’t even have to be fancy consideration. Where’s the warming foyer here and there that folks down on their luck hear by word of mouth; an all-night gas station, the bus transfer center, or a Carrs where someone can buy a token pack of gum to push an empty shopping cart up and down the aisles, to keep their feet from freezing. Where’s the warming vans picking up wanderers on the way to Brother Francis’ Shelter? There’s a large group of those lacking mental wherewithal, or equanimity in Anchorage that are sometimes discharged from API even without the winter clothes and gear they were admitted to the facility with. The concept is called ‘social PLANNING’, or at least considerations. Especially, especially since the numbers are there: 1 in 4 experience serious mental conditions in their lifetime. And, I don’t know about the majority, but when I was a kid, my nearest relatives besides siblings and parents lived in Rapid City SD, Sioux City IA, Nicolet, Montreal, an Air Force Base in Birmingham AL, and Manchester NH. (Notal complaining …just fact. It made for a “fun” three month summer trip in that VW Beetle van, but it’s relatives that always have temporary place if the welcome mat isn’t worn out.)

      • I dont think they prioritized snow removal but Assembly did come up with a plan for $12.5 million for heated sh**ters around town in case someone needs to go….

  4. Private schools are open just as they were during the China Flu ASD kids stay at home, and vacation for ASD teachers policy a few years ago. If you want your kids educated in Anchorage send them to private schools. That is where Parents really have a say in their kids education outcome. All the educational performance indicators back me up. As is private schools have a waiting list to get in.

    • I’m baaaaack! It’s been awhile…but Florida was good for the soul. Even saw Suzanne a few times!

      Well duh! When you have private schools that cost 1K/mo and they get to choose their students…of course they perform better. I don’t think anyone argues that.

      You nailed it: “If you want your kids educated in Anchorage send them to private schools. That is where Parents really have a say in their kids education outcome.” The parent part of this equation is what matters…getting parents to be involved.

      Private school is educational…public school is daycare.

  5. The pussification of our society!!! Two school superintendents, in a row, that don’t have enough sense to poor piss out of a boot! This is Alaska not Seattle. Buck up people!

  6. It’s good the children (for most) staying home from public schools. The anchorage kids are happier with their family than adults who pretend they love their students. Kids can see through adults. Too bad they can’t stay home studying the rest of their childhood.

  7. How did us Alaskans survive the 70s,80s,90s, 2000s ???? Must not have snowed then I guess, hint it did, I was here. Oh, and of course those poor “unhoused campers”! Lord, even our bums were tough back then. Anyone else tired of hearing only two things on “the news”, Storm warning (snow in Alaska???) and how them bums making out.

  8. Live in a place like Valdez for a couple of winters and you’ll appreciate snow. When I drove out of town in a fresh drop of 8 inches of white stuff on December 23, 1994, we’d already received 238 inches of snowfall. That was actually a record for the fourth quarter as most of VDZ’s snow comes in the first four months of each calendar year. And that is more than Anchorage or Fairbanks or pretty much any other populated area receives over an entire season.

    The mayor’s team is doing a great job clearing streets; ADOT: not so much.

  9. There’s no reason or need to call out the National Guard. I was in Anchorage yesterday and had no problem getting everything done that I needed to. Anyone who can’t get around right now is living in the wrong area.

  10. This is ALASKA not frigging California! You are telling me that even with all the clearing of snow they will close the schools again? Wow. Hey Anchorage this is the nut cases you voted for! We are more set for massive amounts of snow more than any place, yet you hinder more education with nonsense. Lived in Alaska over 50 years and can count on one hand how many times school has been cancelled for me as a child, or my own kids.
    Paralyzed by snow in a state that gets more per capita than any other state. DUH DUH DUH DUMMM!

  11. We were in Anchorage for a long weekend and it was laughable how bad most of the main intersections and roads like C Street were. Watching vehicles cross the no-mans land intersections and seeing car parts literally fall off all while watching city-owned graders and plow trucks bouncing over the same stalagmites with nary a blade dropped. Nope, they were all heading to the barn as we watched them all drive by, five to six at a time, all with blades raised. Fun times. I believe there’s talk of raising property taxes in Anchorage though. Maybe the public will squeal loud enough to force the assembly to do so. Then the blades will drop! Government agency budget shortfalls means ALWAYS cut back on front line services first. Rule Number 1. Make the public feel the pain.

  12. Two things at play:

    1-ASD isn’t out to educate kids.
    2-Part of the decision is made based on insurance liability.

    In fairness, winter is off to one hell of a start. It’s been a long time since Anchorage has been hit like this, and a large percentage of the population are transient. A whole lot of people have never seen this.

    However, it’s absolutely incomprehensible an Arctic state is perplexed how to go about their business in winter.

  13. If he drove by my house he’d figure it out. I live one block from an elementary school. My street is used heavily by parents dropping off and picking up. It’s barely passable; one lane, crisscrossed with ruts the size of railroad ties. The roads directly used for school were only cleared late last night. Yesterday evening, they were just as bad as my street. My uber driver (ride back from auto repair shop) refused to pull in; I had to walk to my house from the intersection.

    I don’t blame Bronson for the snow, but this statement is just trying to distract from how bad the problem still is.

    • I do hold Bronson accountable to a point and he needs to stop telling us on the news what a great job the are doing clearing the roads! I’m referring to the MAIN roads!!! You know the ones in green on your freekin map!

    • Well, Bronson did point out that the Muni had been in contact with asd, which I took to mean that the muni was communicating with ASD regarding the snow removal plan, so ASD would know whether or not the streets with schools on them would be cleared by the time the buses would be out this morning. If that’s the case, and the mayor had reason to believe -based on the snow removal plan- that it would be safe for the buses to be out, it’s understandable that he might be disappointed that ASD made the decision they did.

  14. FYSA – there are not actually “snow-days” (aka school closures) any longer. In the days of remote learning, the students are actually in “asynchornus” learning days (aka remote learning), so while the students are physically out of the classroom, they are “expected” to be participating in “remote learning opportunities” utilizing the millions of dollars worth of taxpayer funded technology provided to each student by the ASD. In my opinion, this just makes it that much easier for the ASD to “close schools” in-lieu of “remote learning opportunities” and at the same time blame the city (aka Mayor Bronson) for lack of responsive snow removal. Meanwhile… the working class tax payers seem to be able to make it out to work despite the 8 inches of soft snow clogging the neighborhood streets…

  15. New school bus drivers? I’ve retired from a school bus company here in Eagle River after 20 plus years and we always have new drivers! They are thoroughly trained for all kinds of weather! If you don’t put your big boy/girl pants on, you will never learn the skills required as a bus driver and schools will always be closed at the first sign of storm!

  16. You might have noticed that I am pretty damn passionate about this subject😉 Here is a scenario that has actually happened on several occasions because, after all we do live in Alaska!! The bus drivers picked the kids up in the morning and drop them at the schools. Meanwhile an ice storm moves in. The roads are slick. Do the drivers throw their hands up and say that they are too new and can’t possibly get the kids home??? Absolutely not!!! We chain our buses up and get the job done ✅

  17. Saw a video comment by a woman who showed snow up to the sill of her pickup. “I’ve lived here 37 years and I’ve never seen anything like this.”

    March 17, 2002, Turnagain Subdivision. Measured 28 inches of very WET snow. That is likely the ‘record day’ in Los Anchorage. Clear and cold the next morning; pretty. I have pictures.


    • That woman is typical of most people. They totally forget what it was like last year/yesterday.
      Today’s “problem” is the worst they have ever seen. Even when it isn’t.

    • You are spot on AK4LIFE
      I prefer the good old days when my three teenage daughters would show me pics of a naked Mayor showing off his naked ass.
      Bronson just doesnt get it.
      Berky and Hunter got their s**t together (at least Hunter uses a professional porn site to make movies with his sister in law)

    • Please explain how you came to this conclusion.
      Use citations from the Anchorage Charter to support your conclusion. Additionally, please cite the legislative measure regarding funding for snow removal that have passed since Dave Bronson was elected as supporting evidence.


  18. What can we expect from a Texan? A snowflake falls and Jharrett Bryantt panics, possibly due to excessive use of consonants?

    My girls, prompted by Wednesday’s school closure, remarked, “Are you kidding? Texas guy is now a butt face”.

  19. Ban public schools. Give out school vouchers
    Or get rid of taxes and let parents pay for child education out of pocket or by teaching their own kids.

    Public schools create mindless drones except a small percentage.

    • And if the mayor had NOT had those grievously impassable major state arteries plowed, you radical leftists would have been criticizing him for that instead.

      The self-aggrieved, self-perceived victimhood of you radical leftists simply knows no bounds, doesn’t it? As does your hypocrisy and your savagely biased partisanship.


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