Paul G. Buescher


#539  TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 18, 2018


During the past week we watched the TV news coverage of Hurricane Florence and the devastation that it brought to the Carolinas and Virginia.  The storm eventually arrived here in Northfield Center at 10:30AM this past Monday with nothing more than some light rain.

 It was just a few years ago that folks in the Carolinas were hit by Hurricane Matthew and at the time they said that it was a “thousand-year storm” but Florence well surpassed that storm. 

Here in Ohio, we not only endured the remnants of several hurricanes but we’ve also witnessed some very devastating localized and regional storms and flooding.  Many of these were wrongfully called “100 and 500-year storms” based solely on emotions generated at the time along with a lack of knowledge on our local weather history.  Since 1969, our area has not experienced more than a 25-year storm event.  That’s a fact.  When, not if, a 50-year or 100-year storm hits our area, it will go down in the history books.  And guess what?  We are overdue for both!

 In March of 1913, our 100-year storm struck our entire region.  Heavy rain fell for several days without let up.  Horrific flooding covered all low laying areas and permanently shut down the Ohio-Erie canal.  It killed many people and sunk scores of ships on Lake Erie.  Today, the high-water marks from this storm define our current flood plain boundaries, yet as we all know, many of these areas have been built upon with a total disregard for history and common sense. 

On July 4, 1969, a very violent and strong storm system struck our region and became our 50-year storm event.  I witnessed this storm for myself.  The storm only lasted for about 12-minutes but was preceded by 12-hours of continuous heavy rain.  Winds gusted to 100 mph in the Cleveland area, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 

 In addition to 42 deaths, 500 people were injured from the flooding, tornadoes and lightning.  More than 10,000 homes and 104 small businesses were damaged. 100 boats on Lake Erie went missing and 250,000 were left without power!  The storm was called the Ohio Fireworks Derecho, and it contributed to the most devastating summer flooding in Ohio history.  The photographs that I took that day and those taken by others show the graphic results.  They also show the devastation caused to the homes that were built in the floodplains established in 1913.  Every local low laying area was affected with millions of dollars in damages.

 Our weather history is not confined to just spring and summer storms but winter as well.  From January 25th to January 27, 1978, the “White Hurricane” hit our region.  This was the strongest recorded blizzard in our entire region.  The snowfall was measured in feet and closed most of our streets.  The National Guard was called in to help open many of the roads.  I witnessed this event for myself and even watched the Guard use jack-hammers to break up the ice that closed the entrance to my development in Twinsburg. 

And let’s not forget the night of November 10, 2002.  I was photographing lightning from All Saints Cemetery, which is right across from my home.  During the lightning strikes I saw very noticeable rotation in the clouds right above me and became quite concerned.  A few minutes later my police/fire scanner jumped to life with reports of severe tornado damage in Macedonia.  A few more minutes later reports of the same began coming in from Twinsburg.  The next day the damage was evident and everywhere with many homes destroyed and damaged from the estimated F1 to F2 tornado.

 September is National Preparedness month and is the reason that I chose to share this information with you, especially while Hurricane Florence and its aftermath is still fresh on your minds.  Storms and other events can and will affect you in the future.  ARE YOU PREPARED? 


Q >>> – During the installation process, my sprinkler line was cut.  I saw the cut and the attempted repair by the WOW people.  The WOW people installing the cable obviously did not know the correct way to repair the line break. The repair did not hold.  I am now hopeful that this can be fixed by a professional sprinkler company at WOW’s expense.   My understanding is that the easement runs 17 feet from the road.  This sprinkler  line was not in the easement which brings up the question… “Why is WOW not installing there line in the easement”. This line was installed on private property and I did not give them permission to dig.  In addition, they left a mess when they were done even marking the grass with white paint where the dog had done his business (very unprofessional)….  Please contact me via e-mail or cell to make arrangements to have this line repaired.

A >>> – You sent this email that was copied to me to both WOW and our Townhall.  I then forwarded it to our Service and Zoning Departments because they are the ones who make the inspections.  All arrangements have now been made to address your concerns. 


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Plain & simple – chip and seal is a low budget “do it the way we have always done it” approach…  show some innovation and I will consider voting my for another road levy…. I am very disappointed in this approach…  this is not a real savings because you never considered asphalt a real option… if you had reverted from asphalt to chip and seal, that would have been a real and measurable savings… chip and seal on top of chip and seal shows a real lack of innovative thought! 


No “innovative thought?”  We never considered asphalt as a real option because IT WAS NEVER AN OPTION!  We have 21-miles of Township roads to maintain and the Charter Lake area is only 1.6-miles of that 21-miles.  Our Road Funds only provide around $500,000 per year, yet to asphalt Charter Lake’s 1.6-miles would have cost $576,000!  What part of this math do you not understand?  $472,000 IS a “real and measurable savings!”  And that money is being used to maintain the rest of the Township’s 19.4-miles of roads, along with its related equipment and all of the Service Department AND Fire Department vehicles as well as our buildings and parks.  While this may not be innovative in the context of your narrative, It IS “Plain & Simple!”


Hi Paul first glad to see you are ok. I just wanted to give you a heads up on spectrum we have had alot of issues with them. They split our line with an illagal splitter with our neighbors system to our total.system being down for days. They blame WOW and was not there falt but the final straw was they re buried a line without checking or marking the ground for utilities. I called and of course nothing done I read and was at the Townships meeting with WOW about there bond. But I think while they are working maybe the township needs to go after Spectrum and have them set up a bond before they blow up a house or kill someone and blame a company that is not to blame just a thought. 


 Thank you,

 Paul G. Buescher

Northfield Center Twp. – Trustee