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beeraholikchik t1_j2eya3x wrote

If a business is open there will likely be someone going there for stupid shit. I've worked at gas stations during winter storms and blizzards and while gas stations can be considered essential, people came in just to buy lottery tickets. No gas, no snacks, no tools. Just lottery tickets.

Not to mention the fact that anyone that closes a business or decides not to go into work because of a storm will be labeled as overdramatic if the storm ends up shifting or not being as extreme as forecasted. Which is another issue - while actual meteorologists might care about the forecast being accurate, news stations want something to sound apocalyptic. It leads to a "boy who cried wolf" situation where everyone in the area knows there's a 90% chance it won't be that bad, and everyone outside the area calls them idiots for not taking it seriously. Of course, if it turns out not to be that serious everyone forgets about it, so it doesn't occur to them that we get warnings like that every time something shows up on the radar.

And then there's the slight chance that something gets worse than originally forecasted. Happens with hurricanes sometimes and the concept of "too late to evacuate" doesn't make sense to someone who hasn't been in that situation before.

Oh, and while I totally agree that the city should've done more about this, keep in mind that once they say that everything needs to shut down the city turns into an absolute shitshow with people realizing that they're not prepared, leading to more clogged streets/stores/what have you. It'd be nice if people could have that all ready at the beginning of the season, but again, preparation is a luxury for people living hand-to-mouth.

Shit, and I damn near forgot to mention that while it is nice for a business to close when a storm like this rolls through, the employees whose shifts were cancelled don't get storm pay. They just don't get paid. Their landlords and utility companies don't care that their shifts got cancelled. Neither do grocery stores.