The City’s snow removal operations vary depending upon the amount of snow, nature of the storm, and most importantly, timing of the storm. During a typical snowstorm event, City employees begin to plow streets at midnight. Snow emergency routes are plowed first; crews then move to residential areas. At 2:00 a.m., equipment is moved to the downtown area. In most residential areas snow is pushed off the streets onto the terrace; however, downtown snow must be hauled away. This requires larger equipment including graders, snowblowers, loaders and dump trucks. It is simply too hazardous to have this equipment working on downtown streets during the day when vehicular traffic increases. Snowplows often weigh over 50,000 pounds (25 tons) when loaded with sand and salt. Poor visibility and blind spots enhance the difficulty of operating plows. We realize the snow in downtown areas can be quite cumbersome for both businesses and customers; however, we appreciate your understanding in putting everyone’s safety first.
Here are some things you can do to help keep operations running smoothly:
- Maintain a safe distance back from snowplows by at least 50 feet. As road speeds increase, the distance should also increase. Drivers need to give room to the plows for safe operations.
- When it begins to snow, please remove all vehicles from the street.
- Keep small children inside when snow equipment is operating in your neighborhood.
- Trim low hanging branches 14 feet above the street to prevent damage to plow trucks.
- Shovel the snow away from fire hydrants near your home for public safety.
- Shovel the snow away from catch basins in the street so melting snow can run off.
Snowplow operators do not place snow in driveways on purpose. Unfortunately, there is no practical way for the snowplow operator to cut off the windrow of snow when crossing a driveway. This problem is especially acute in cul-de-sacs because of the limited space. One thing you can do to reduce the amount of snow that is plowed in front of your driveway is to widen the plowed area of the driveway to help catch the windrows. Residents are advised to wait until the plow has been through their road prior to cleaning their driveway and mailbox area. If drifting or more snow occurs the plows may have to make multiple passes on a road at a later time to keep the road clear. If possible, plow drivers will try to prevent excessive blockages at driveways but at times this is not possible. Please remember that the clearing of driveway and mailbox areas is the responsibility of the resident.
SIDEWALK SNOW REMOVAL
As a reminder, an occupant or owner has 10 daylight hours after snow has fallen or ice has formed to remove snow from their sidewalks or to treat ice with a suitable product.