Sunday, April 17, 2016

Problem Solving

The daffodils are blooming now, but it's forecasted they won't hang around long enough for the Daffodil Festival at the end of the month.

Visit #1010, Saturday 16 April 16, 6:50-8:40AM, 3.9 miles.
Temps in the high 30's, sunny.

On Friday I received an e-mail from Chris Bourdon, Assistant Parks and Recreation Director. After I documented finding the lock to the gate at the south end of Merimere Reservoir cut for the second time this year, Chris and his staff took action to solve this chronic problem. Here was their solution:

Thanks to Chris for supplying the photo.

This design duplicates that found on gates elsewhere in Hubbard Park. I presumed they used this style because it's been trouble-free at the other locations.

I had in mind other solutions but due to scheduling couldn't get to photograph them. This morning I wanted to walk the road toward the north end of Merimere Reservoir, pick up trash, and "test" the design of the lock.

I started early so as to not draw attention to my quality control work.

Early on I found these dual bags of dog poop. Same color bags as I was finding last year. The owner must feel they've fulfilled their responsibility if they leave the bags for someone else to pick up.

At the newly locked gate, I whipped out my inspection tools, hoping to not be caught and questioned as to what I was doing.

The pin could still be vulnerable to a hacksaw as I know in the past, pins at other locations have been cut. A pin with less play would be better.

This is probably the most likely scenario since I've found the locks cut off before and in fact, in 2010 found the pair of cablecutters you see below stashed in the woods behind the water tank. I don't know if those jaws were designed for hardened steel or cable but since I found 'em, it's possible they were used on previous locks.

While the cutter head fit under the shroud, it was somewhat difficult to position the lock hasp in the jaws and in my casual attempts I wasn't successful. This could be a good indication.

Optimally, it would have been better to place the shroud and lock at the BOTTOM of the gate to make boltcutter access more difficult. At least that's what I saw from a design I found elsewhere and will hopefully illustrate in a week or two.

Nevertheless, my hat's off to Chris and the Parks Department for implementing a solution to this problem. I'll keep an eye on it long term and report on it's effectiveness.

Leaving the gate, I walked the road to the north end of the reservoir and back.

Last week I commented on what Dunkin' Donuts drinkers put in their cups. While this week supplied me with more evidence alas, neither cup had any indication of what they added to their coffee. Maybe they both drink it black.

At the north end I enjoyed the quiet of the early morning. I may just have to enjoy a cup of coffee myself some morning at this spot, even though I'm not a coffee drinker.

I turned around and returned to the park, dropping off my trash and stashing my inspection tools until next time.

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