Snow & Ice Removal Policy
The City of Carthage's purpose is to provide an adequate transportation system for vehicles properly equipped for winter driving conditions in snow and ice events. Optimal conditions will be provided as soon as practicable after a storm. Certain streets have a higher intensity use and thus have a higher priority for snow removal. The City of Carthage has established the following criteria for snow removal.
Statement of Policy
It is the policy of the City of Carthage to provide an appropriate flow of traffic in the City of Carthage during ice and snow conditions, while staying within reasonable financial expenditure limits. The Carthage City Council and staff, with adoption of this plan, is establishing a high priority for maintaining appropriate traffic flow in regards to snow and ice conditions. When snow and ice removal is necessary, first priority will be to open the Snow Route System (Map attached). This will allow a uniform open street grid throughout the City. This pattern also places most citizens within a reasonable distance of a street that has been opened or treated within a rational length of time, depending on conditions. Street crews are responsible for keeping these streets travelable throughout the storm. Although undesired, there is always a potential for damage to mailboxes and landscaping during the snow removal process. Damage will be evaluated on a case by case basis. Mailboxes are considered a structure on the right-of-way. A sound post and securely attached box will not be knocked over by snow coming off the plow. All Street crew drivers are instructed to drive as slow as realistically possible during wet snows in order to minimize the problems with mailboxes. Mailboxes that are damaged by actual physical contact with City equipment will be repaired at the City's expense, but only if they were properly located and installed. The mail box owner is responsible for repair or replacement of the mailbox if the mailbox was damaged by the pressure of the plowed snow and there was no physical contact with the plow equipment.
The Snow Route System
The Street Commission for the City of Carthage has designated a special network of roads within the city as a snow route system. Snow plow crews will clear and apply deicer materials when applicable to the designated Snow Route first, which include Primary and Minor Arterial roadways, and Collector streets in priority order. The only deviation from these priorities is at the request of Public Safety to assist in providing emergency access or support. In the event heavy, continuing snowfall prevents adequate cleaning of streets, operations will be restricted to the established designated snow routes. This network of roads encompasses more than 28 miles. The goal is to provide emergency response and the maximum level of service to the greatest number of people as quickly as possible when winter weather affects road conditions.
Priority 1: Designated Snow Route including Principal and Minor Arterial roadways and securely attached box will not be knocked over by snow coming off the plow. All Street crew drivers are instructed to drive as slow as realistically possible during wet snows in order to minimize the problems with mailboxes. Mailboxes that are damaged by actual physical contact with City equipment will be repaired at the City's expense, but only if they were properly located and installed. The mail box owner is responsible for repair or replacement of the mailbox if the mailbox was damaged by the pressure of the plowed snow and there was no physical contact with the plow equipment.
Priority 2: "hot spots" (steep hills, dangerous intersections, and bridges). Schools (other than on snow route). Remaining Principal and Minor Arterial roadways and Collector Streets.
Priority 3: Low traffic residential areas. These areas are plowed after all priority one and two streets have been plowed and treated. Anti-skid or deicer materials may be applied as necessary. The following will also include Public Parking Lots: Plowed as soon as practical after snow event, depending on severity of occurrence. Sidewalks: Sidewalks at City operated facilities shall be cleared within 36 hours of end of snowfall. Clearing snow from sidewalks adjacent to private property is the responsibility of the property owner or resident. Alleys: Alleys will not be plowed except to maintain essential City services.
Citizens are requested to assist in the snow removal program by:
- Parking off the street during inclement weather.
If street parking is absolutely necessary, do not park directly across from another parked car. Visibility is poor during snow removal and the trucks are large and need room to maneuver. Please give the trucks plenty of room.
- Trimming low hanging branches from right-of-way trees.
Trees that are located close to the street must have their branches trimmed a minimum of eight feet above the pavement. Snow removal trucks can be damaged by low hanging limbs resulting in equipment down time and a slower snow removal program.
- Do not allow children to construct snow structures or sled in the right-of-way.
Snow plow trucks move several tons of snow off the pavement. It is extremely dangerous to allow children to play near the road during snow removal. The truck drivers cannot always see children playing and the weight and force of moving snow could cause serious injury.
- Snow plowed from roads could end up blocking private driveways for some time. The Street Department recognizes the inconvenience this causes. The City is unable to remove these windrows of snow from the numerous driveways within the City. To reduce the amount of snow that might block a driveway, individuals should shovel an open area approximately 15 feet long along the curb line in advance of the driveway.
Any private contractor hired by a resident for private property snow removal will not be permitted to place any snow in the roadway.
- Placement of snow stockpiled by private contractors plowing parking lots shall not obstruct any sanitary storm sewer inlet directly or obstruct flow of runoff to said sanitary storm sewer inlet or be stockpiled in such a manner as to create a line of sight issue.
- Seventeen Street Department personnel are available for equipment operations and snow removal. Landfill and Park Department personnel may also assist in the snow removal effort depending on snow/ice severity. When a storm is imminent, Street Department crews are put on notice and assigned times to report to work to begin snow and ice removal operations as conditions dictate. Work continues until streets are travelable.
View the Snow and Ice Removal Policy (PDF).