The City believes it is in the best interest of the residents, for the City to assume basic responsibility for control of snow and ice on city streets. Reasonable ice and snow control is necessary for routine travel and emergency services. The City will proved such control in a safe and cost effective manner; keeping in mind safety, budget, personnel and environmental concerns. The City will use city employees, equipment and/or private contractors to provide this service.
When Will the City Start Snow or Ice Control Operations?
The Public Works Director, Foreman or responsible person will decide when to begin snow or ice control operations. The criteria for that decision is:
Snow accumulation of 3 inches (not a minimum) or more
- Drifting of snow that causes problems for travel
- Icy conditions which seriously affect travel
- Time of snowfall in relationship to heavy use of streets.
Snow and ice control operations are expensive and involve the use of limited personnel and equipment. Consequently, snowplowing operations will not generally be conducted for snowfall less than 3 inches.
How Will the Snow be Plowed?
Snow will be plowed in a manner so as to minimize any traffic obstruction. The center of the roadway will be plowed first. The snow shall then be pushed from left to right. The discharge shall go onto the boulevard area of the street. When a plow goes on a bridge, the driver shall slow down, so that snow does not go over the bridge if possible. In times of extreme snowfall, center lanes may be the only part of the street cleared, until employees catch up and can completely clear the street of all snow. Cul-de-sac entries are plowed along with residential streets. Cul-de-sac turn-arounds are plowed with traffic flow for safety of operator and residents.
The Public Works Director or Foreman will determine when snow will be removed by truck from the area. Such snow removal will occur in areas where there is no room on the boulevard for snow storage and in areas where accumulated piles of snow create a hazardous condition. Snow removal operations will not commence until other snowplowing operations have been completed. Snow removal operations may also be delayed depending on weather conditions, personnel, equipment failure and budget availability. The snow will be removed and hauled to a snow storage area. The snow storage area will be located, so as to minimize environmental problems.
Priorities and Schedule for Which Streets Will be Plowed
The City has classified streets based on the street function, traffic volume and importance to the welfare of the community. Those streets are classified, as "Snow Plow Routes" will be plowed first. These are high volume, which connect major sections of the city and provide access for emergency, fire, police and medical services.
The second priority streets are those streets providing access to schools and commercial businesses, low volume residential streets, alleys and city parking lots.
Work Schedule for Snowplow Operators
In severe snow emergencies, operators sometimes have to work in excess of 8-hour shifts. The Public Works Director will determine number of hours each operator works. Operators will take a fifteen-minute break (which does not conflict with the union contract) after four hours.
Snow and ice control operations will be conducted only when weather conditions do not endanger the safety of city employees and equipment. Factors that may delay snow and ice control operations include; severe cold, significant winds and limited visibility.
Use of Sand, Salt and Other Chemicals
The city will use sand, salt and other chemicals when there are hazardous ice or slippery conditions. The city is concerned about the effect of such chemicals on the environment and will limit its use for that reason.
Sidewalks - Bike Paths
The city will maintain some of the sidewalks and bike paths in the city. The list of those sidewalks - bike paths is attached. As there is a limited number of personnel available, the city will only maintain these sidewalks-bike paths after the streets have been plowed.