|Teaneck police and other employees shooting the breeze shortly before noon on Wednesday, when State Street, above, and Cedar Lane were closed, presumably to clean up the mess left by snowplows after the blizzard of 2016.|
By VICTOR E. SASSON
The death of a 23-year-old woman and her children from carbon-monoxide poisoning in an idling car demonstrates once again how just how obsolete The Record's Road Warrior column has become.
John Cichowski, the confused, burned-out reporter who has been writing the column for more than a dozen years, didn't even bother warning readers of storm hazards before the snow started falling early last Saturday.
And his first column after the storm didn't even mention the potential for carbon-monoxide poisoning, if car owners didn't first clear snow blocking the exhaust of their entombed cars on streets throughout North Jersey.
As Page 1 of The Record reports today, Sashalynn Rosa, 23; and her son, Messiah, 1, died on Saturday, and daughter, Saniyah, 3, died on Wednesday at a Paterson hospital.
They had climbed into the idling family car to keep warm as the children's father began shoveling to free it from snow pushed aside by snowplows on their Passaic city street (A-1).
But the car's tailpipe was blocked by snow, causing deadly carbon-monoxide fumes to fill the vehicle.
|Instead of warning others about potential carbon-monoxide poisoning, Road Warrior John Cichowski wrote an entire column about a new law that calls for poles like this one in Hackensack that will make fire hydrants easier to find in snowstorms.|
The mother and son died on Saturday, but early deadlines, a lack of contacts in Passaic or sheer incompetence prevented the tragedy from appearing in the paper on Sunday.
That was a good thing for the moronic Cichowski, whose light-hearted column on drivers passing snowplows, roof snow and rock salt dominated the Local front that same day.
Their deaths finally hit the front page on Monday.
But instead of washing the blood off of his hands and warning others whose cars were covered by snow all over North Jersey, the Road Warrior's next two columns had absolutely nothing to do with driving, commuting or anything else.
On Tuesday, he blabbed on and on about a law on clearing fire hydrants of snow.
And a day later, on Wednesday, he had en eye-glazing column filled with statistics on whether men or women are safer drivers.
Readers no longer doubt that Cichowski has completely lost it, and should be replaced with a fresher voice, something that can be said for the paper's other columnists, including Charles Stile, Mike Kelly and Bill Ervolino.
Editor Martin Gottlieb, who announced he is retiring at the end of January, is still around, and his name appears on the editorial page today.
That explains why there is little else of note on the front page once you've read about the death of Saniyah Bonilla, 3, of Passaic, four days after his mother and brother.
Also on Page 1, Staff Writer Charles Stile continues to churn out Christie campaign crap as if the governor has even the slimmest chance of winning the GOP presidential nomination.
At the end of this post, see a comment from a Hackensack reader on Stile.