Snow Emergency/Snow Removal Policy
The City of Le Sueur assumes basic responsibility for the snow and ice control on City streets. The City will provide 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 Streets & Parks Manager will decide when to begin snow or ice control operations. The criteria for that decision are:
- Snow accumulation of two (2) inches 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 full snow plowing operations will not generally be conducted for snowfall of less than two (2) inches.
A Snow Emergency may be declared when at least two (2) inches of snow has been received in a 24-hour period. Snow Emergencies are declared to allow snow plow crews to clear roadways for movement of fire, health, police and emergency traffic, as well as to ensure the safety of the community. Additionally, the snow emergency restricts parking in city-owned lots in the downtown area so that the snow can be removed from those parking lots. The start time for the Snow Emergency will be declared in the announcement and the emergency remains in effect for 72 hours or until all streets have been plowed curb to curb.
- No parking on city streets until the snow has been plowed from curb to curb, even if the precipitation has stopped. Parking is only allowed in City designated parking areas.
- Vehicles parked in violation of snow emergency rules will be towed and are subject to fees outlined in the City of Le Sueur Governmental Fee Schedule.
The City of Le Sueur publicizes the declaration of a snow emergency in multiple locations:
- City of Le Sueur website (www.cityoflesueur.com)
- City of Le Sueur Facebook Page
- Le Sueur County News
- KCHK Radio
- WCCO, KSTP, KMSP, KARE, KEYC
The Streets and Parks Manager will determine if and when snow will be removed from the area by truck. 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 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.
Use of Sand, Salt & 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.
Damage to a mailbox is a risk that snowplow operators face during their winter plowing requirements. The City will conduct a review of each mailbox damage claim to determine whether the City has any legal responsibility for the damage:
- If it is determined that the weight of the snow caused the damage, the City of Le Sueur will not assume responsibility for repair of the mailbox. If evidence shows that physical contact from the snowplow was made to the mailbox, the City of Le Sueur shall provide a $65.00 payment to the property owner for repair or replacement. The property owner shall install the new mailbox as shown in in Snowplowing Policy (Attachment 1), and this will relieve the City from further future obligations.
- Failure of the property owner to upgrade the mailbox to the City of Le Sueur standards will relieve the City from any further liability from damage caused during snow plowing operations.
Complaints will be recorded on telephone logs. Calls requiring service will be transferred to a work request and forwarded to the appropriate supervisor for scheduling. Emergency complaints will be handled in an expeditious manner as resources are available.