City Desk

Bring Back the Flamethrowers!


That's the snow-removal suggestion of reader Scott W. Langill, who cites the methods used to deal with John F. Kennedy's 1961 presidential inauguration:

The [Army Corps of Engineers] teamed up with more than 1,000 District of Columbia employees to clear the inaugural parade route. Luckily much equipment and some men had been pre-positioned and were ready to go. In the end the task force employed hundreds of dump trucks, front-end loaders, sanders, plows, rotaries, and even flamethrowers to clear the way. District and Army equipment worked side-by-side to move more than 1,400 cars from the inaugural route. Another contingent of troops cleared the reviewing stands and bleachers at the White House and U.S. Capitol. Some 1,700 Boy Scouts joined in similar efforts along the parade route....What could have been an inauspicious beginning to John F. Kennedy's presidency turned out to be a memorable success.

LL has inquired with the D.C. National Guard as to whether this is an option today.

UPDATE, 3:30 P.M.: Lt. Col. Kevin McAndrews of the D.C. National Guard says the force has no flamethrowers. Bummer.

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  • Downtown rez

    (shh don't tell Chris Matthews or Harry Thomas)

  • proballdc

    I heard about this. And I heard that it has been used in the District years past by the Army Corps to fight heavy snow, and very effectively.

    It has to be a sight to see. Like a clip from Terminator.

    Let me know when the test run is scheduled.

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  • Truth Hurts

    Too late.

  • noodlez