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Snow plows are emergency vehicles, but typically operate under posted speed limit. Snowplows are big, noisy pieces of equipment. It may appear at times that the snowplow operator is driving too fast for road conditions. Many times the engine sound and noise of the plow scraping the pavement give the perception that the truck is flying down the street, when in actuality, they are only moving at 15 to 20 miles per hour. The plows do move faster on open stretches of road to push the snow farther off of the road to ensure there is sufficient space to stack the snow from the next storm and to avoid creating high snow banks that can impair visibility.
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Unfortunately, pushing snow onto driveways and sidewalks is an unavoidable consequence of plowing. Plow operators do not intentionally push the snow on to your driveway/sidewalk. They cannot control the amount of snow coming off the edge of the blade and it is not practical to lift plows at every driveway throughout the City. Plow drivers have to get as close to the curb line as possible to clear catch basins to allow melting snow to drain properly. The main priority for the City is to keep streets safe to travel for emergency vehicles and motorists. The diagram below shows how to avoid the "second shovel."
As frustrating as this can be, during accumulating snow events, thesnow will likely continue to be pushed back up into your driveway/on yoursidewalk until the snow is cleared from the road. Pushing snow out into thestreet is not only counterproductive as the plow will always be angled towardthe curb line and snow will end up back where it came from anyway, but it cancause unsafe driving conditions exposing the homeowner up to potential liability.Additionally, pushing snow into the street is a violation of City ordinance §28-1100(a)(2).
Unfortunately, snow in the driveway is an unavoidable consequence of snow plowing and is not done intentionally. The City’s main concern is making streets safe to emergency vehicles and motorists. To avoid double work when clearing the driveway, try to push snow to the right side of the driveway when looking toward the street instead of to the left. When the plow comes by the snow will dump in this clear area instead of your driveway approach. The more snow you clear from this area, the less will be deposited at your driveway entrance. The diagram below shows how to avoid the "second shovel."
The City of Moline works very closely with the Fire and Police departments. Should the need arise, emergency crews will contact Public Works and the closest plow truck will be diverted to the emergency to clear the way for emergency vehicles and personnel.
It is the property owner's and/or occupant's responsibility to clear snow and ice from sidewalks that border their property within 12 hours after snow has fallen. Any accumulation of snow six inches or greater in depth constitutes evidence of a violation. Failure to comply with removal constitutes a public nuisance. Pushing, plowing or shoveling snow into a roadway is prohibited. View a copy of the Code of Ordinances on Sidewalk snow removal. Snow and ice complaints may be reported to 309.524.2350. Questions or concerns about the City's snow removal policy? Contact our Neighborhood Improvement Officer at 309.524.2014. The City encourages everyone to clear their sidewalks and help others who can't. Help make Moline sidewalks safe for all pedestrians this winter season.
City staff does periodically clear snow in front of fire hydrants, but the Fire Department would appreciate any assistance from homeowners. Unfortunately, the City does not have enough personnel to clear every hydrant in City limits, especially during snow events when they need to be plowing, so we do rely on help from homeowners. The fire hydrant closest to your residence will be used if you or any of your neighbors should have a fire, so the ability to access that hydrant in case of a fire is very important. If each residents clears snow from a nearby hydrant it would ensure that every hydrant is accessible if needed.
The City does not have sufficient equipment/operators to plow all roads at once. The first priority will be to plow the 4 main arterial routes, 6 hill routes, and requests from emergency personnel. The residential streets are plowed when snow accumulation on the road exceeds 2” and will be prioritized after the main arterial and hill routes have been completed. Management evaluates regional measurements to determine when that threshold has been met to begin residential snow removal. Alleys are not included in the City’s snow removal plan.
Please contact Public Works at 309.524.2400 to inform the City of slick spots so that area can be evaluated and addressed accordingly.
It is always important to exercise caution during winter driving conditions and give yourself extra time, but it is even more critical to allow extra travel time when temperatures drop below 15°.
Unfortunately, alleys are not included in the City’s snow removal plan.
The City’s highest priority is the safety of our residents, guests and travelers; however, there are also financial restrictions that do not allow us to use salt on every surface during every storm. Treated salt is used as an abrasive on a case by case and storm by storm basis. Keep in mind that when temperatures get below 10°-15°, even though the salt is treated, it becomes ineffective at melting ice. Please allow extra travel time when temperatures drop below 15°.
Some residential streets contain steep grades or other conditions that make them more difficult to navigate under storm conditions. For safety reasons, these streets are assigned the higher priority similar to that assigned to main arterial and hill routes.
The City does our best to get to all streets as quickly and as safely as possible. After addressing the main arterial and hill routes, management evaluates regional measurements to determine if snow accumulations on the road exceeds 2”. When that 2” of accumulation threshold has been met to begin residential snow removal, trucks will move to residential areas.
All trucks have been equipped with GPS monitoring devices that will show up on an interactive map and indicate where the trucks are, when the plow blade is down, when the salt spreader is active and how long it has been since a truck was there last. This interactive map is almost ready to go live, please check back soon for the web address!
This could be because they are driving through a route they are not assigned to in order to get to where they are supposed to be, they may be out to only spread salt or could be heading back to the Municipal Services building to get more salt, fuel or to get repairs.
If your mailbox is damaged by the snow plow, please contact Public Works at 309.524.2400. Snow is very heavy and can be very compacted snow/ice when coming off a plow blade. The design of the plow is to force the snow and ice off of the road, which can push a lot of weight and force on to a mailbox post. The city uses a 4” x 4” wood post and a standard design metal mailbox for replacements. If the property owner would like a different mailbox or post other than the standard design provided, the owner may receive up to $25 compensation for post replacement and up to $25 for mailbox replacement. We apologize, but the City will not repair or replace decorative mailboxes and decorative posts. Non-standard mailboxes and enclosures placed in the public right of way are at the owner’s risk and responsibility.
Please contact Public Works at 309.524.2400. You will be placed on a list for spring cleanup once all the snow is melted. Sod and grass damage is restored by City crews with top soil and grass seed.
Ice is a bad situation no matter how much is on the ground and no two ice events are the same. The first priority will be to address the 4 main arterial routes, 6 hill routes, and requests from emergency personnel. Staff will evaluate road conditions each time an ice event occurs and address the needs accordingly. The City’s highest priority is the safety of our residents, guests and travelers; however, there are also financial restrictions that do not allow us to use salt on every surface during every storm. Main arterial and hill routes will be treated with beet juice to help raise the melting temperature of the ice/snow and treated salt is used as an abrasive on a case by case and storm by storm basis. Keep in mind that when temperatures get below 10°-15°, even though the salt is treated, it becomes ineffective at melting ice. It is always important to exercise caution during winter driving conditions and give yourself extra time, but it is even more critical to allow extra travel time when temperatures drop below 15°.