PRIORITY 1: Arterial and major collector roads.
PRIORITY 2: Minor collector roads and high volume, through residential roads.
PRIORITY 3: Remaining through streets
PRIORITY 4: Dead end roads and cul-de-sacs.
You may park on the street as soon as it has been completely plowed to the curb, or its full width. Be careful as it may take the plows more than one pass to get the job done completely. If the storm continues, it is unwise to park on the street.
For normal snow plowing operations contact us. For medical, fire or police emergencies call 911.
Our purpose is to allow access to as many streets as possible. It is not possible to plow curb-to -curb during a storm. Plows will return as time, manpower and the storm permit.
The ridge left behind as the snowplow passes is called a windrow. It is higher than the undisturbed snow level. A windrow cannot be avoided. The City does not have resources to remove windrows therefore it becomes the property owners’ responsibility to create access to the driveway.
If minimum-width (such as residential areas) traffic lanes are to be kept open, there is not enough room in the center of the roads for snow. Roads need to be cleared for emergency vehicle access, and narrow roads already limit their access.
Placing snow in the center of the roadway would create several safety and liability issues:
The City’s Snow Removal Policy requires that main arterial roadways and major collections be plowed first, and then be kept open, so operators may not begin plowing residential streets for several hours after the snow has stopped falling, or up to two days after the storm ends. If all other streets in your area have been plowed and yours hasn’t, please contact us.
The Street Maintenance Division uses “gravity” plows that are mounted on the same trucks used all year. These plows do not have the ability to put pressure down; therefore, they are incapable of cutting ice or packed snow.
That’s a good question. Our drivers follow a pattern of clearing the most highly used streets first.
If possible, hire a neighbor or some other temporary help to clear the sidewalks, or call local service groups, churches or the Department of Economic Security for help with personal snow removal.
Unfortunately, the Street Maintenance Division does not have the resources to plow driveways and/or berms of those who are unable to do so. Our primary goal is to use the resources we have available to provide safe and reliable roadways in the most in the most efficient manner possible. We encourage those who are not able to shovel to ask neighbors for assistance or hire a private snowplow service.
The City’s snowplow program is prioritized on a “greatest impact” basis. The main roads (arterials) are plowed first, followed by collector and residential streets. This allows citizens some mobility within the community and keeps emergency services as open as possible. Once these routes are accessible, side streets and cul-de-sacs are plowed. With quick and heavy snowfall, it may be necessary for the snowplow to remain on the arterial and collector roads for longer periods to keep up with the snow, which can cause a significant delay in getting to the residential streets. Also, your road may be plowed in the middle of the night and, when you wake up in the morning, more snow may have accumulated.
Ideally, the snowplow operator needs at least 10 feet to be clear on the side of the road. Anything less can cause a delay in snow plowing, possible damage to the vehicle, and/or the risk of injury. If the operator hits a vehicle parked in a driveway (yet too close to the road), the operator is instructed to stop immediately and call the supervisor and the Police Department, who will take a report at the scene. Do not park in the middle of the road or you will be towed. Illegally parked cars are a major cause of roads being left unplowed.
Do not assume we are not picking up trash due to a storm. All containers need to be at the curb by 6:00 a.m. on pick-up days. Leave containers out until they have been emptied. We will work until all streets have been done, regardless of, if the street was plowed or not. Due to snow conditions regular starting points on the routes could change due to accessibility. Routes may be continued the next day if unsafe conditions exist. If conditions continue to be unsafe to provide service- Trash collection services may be cancelled.
Our Street Maintenance Division monitors the weather through the internet and National Weather Service. If inclement weather is forecasted, a snow removal crew is activated to monitor and observe the actual conditions.
If there is a high probability that a storm will hit within the city, a base crew will be mobilized. When snow starts falling, as observed by the patrol or base crew, our full snow shift will be deployed. This means we may have approximately 12 snowplow operators on the streets. Crews remain on 12-hour shifts for 24-hour coverage until the storm is over. After the storm, the crews conduct “clean-up” operations, where they go back and try to push or “wing back” the snow farther off the road to make room for snow from future storms
In the event of an emergency, call 911. If the Police Department determines you have a qualifying emergency, a plow will be dispatched to help emergency crews get access.
City streets are classified as major and minor arterials and collectors, local commercial, and local.
These are defined as follows:
Major Arterials: Facilitate relative long trip lengths at moderate to high operatizing speeds with somewhat limited access to adjacent properties. Major arterials generally serve major centers of activity in urban areas and have the highest traffic volume corridors. These streets are often major gateways to the community.
Minor Arterials: Provide somewhat shorter trip lengths than major arterials, generally interconnect with and augment major arterial routes at moderate operating speeds and allow somewhat greater access to adjacent properties than major arterials.
Major Collectors: Collect and distribute significant amounts of traffic between arterials, minor collectors and local streets at moderate to low operating speeds. Major collectors provide for more accessibility to adjacent properties than arterials.
Minor Collectors: Collect and distribute moderate amounts of traffic between arterials, major collectors and local streets at relatively low operating speeds with greater accessibility than major collectors.
Local Commercial: Generally, provide direct access to commercial properties. The commercial street usually has low volumes, speeds, trip lengths and minimal through traffic.
Local Street: Generally, provide direct access to abutting properties. Local streets possess relatively low traffic volumes, operating speeds, trip lengths and minimal through traffic movements.