Snow/Ice Removal

When it snows, public works and parks staff all become part of the city’s snow and ice removal efforts. The goal is to clear snow from city streets as efficiently and quickly possible. A snow removal system is in place and it’s designed to be consistent, which helps residents know what to expect.
22 Jan-13-2014web
In order for a snow and ice removal program to be effective, a written policy must be established.  This policy will guide personnel of the Department of Public Works concerned with deicing, plowing, and snow removal efforts.  It  not only gives snow removal crews a set of guidelines to follow, but also informs the general public of the procedures being followed so they may have a better understanding of the City's snow removal efforts.

This document is the official policy for snow removal for the City of Verona.  All existing ordinances regarding snow removal from sidewalks, and parking regulations for snow emergencies remain in effect, and are considered a necessary part of the overall snow removal plan.

The City of Verona will strive to maintain safe conditions for drivers observing winter driving conditions.  However, this is not an absolute "bare pavement" policy.

It must be recognized that, although this policy sets general guidelines to be followed, each storm has its own character with variable conditions such as wind, extreme temperatures, timing, duration, and moisture content.  The policy must remain flexible and take into consideration these variables.

The Public Works Department maintains 141 lane miles of roadway that are broken down into 4 major plow routes. The routes are cleared by 4 different 2 truck teams. The crews also use 3 wheel loaders/tractors to plow 70 cul-de-sacs, 8 municipal parking lots and the Cemetery. In addition, City Parks Staff is utilized in maintaining 6 miles of public paths and 5.5 miles of sidewalks during each snowfall. 


The on call supervisors shall generally keep themselves apprised of changing weather conditions.  However, the Department of Public Works relies heavily on the observations of Police Department personnel and various Internet weather sites to alert them to road conditions any time of the day.  Weather reports issued by the National Weather Service will also aid in preparation of snow and ice control deployments.

The implementation of the policy shall be dictated by actual road conditions.  One (1) inch or more accumulation will generally prompt plowing procedures to start.
However, if the onset of the storm is accompanied by freezing rain or icing conditions, deicing procedures may already have been instituted.

The responsibility for ordering out personnel and equipment for winter operations shall primarily be with the on call supervisor.  During off duty hours, the on call supervisor and the Police Department shall keep watch.   


Deployment for ice control or snow plowing will commence at the direction of the on call supervisor. Services shall be provided in accordance with the following procedures.


Ice control will commence, when, in the opinion of the on call supervisor, an unsafe condition for travel exists. Deicing operations can vary greatly, depending on whether there is a need for citywide coverage, or if the slippery areas are isolated. The Public Works and Police Departments will be in radio or phone contact to assure that priority locations are done in a timely manner. Attention is given to City streets according to the designated priorities as follows:

Priority 1       Main Streets       (Criteria: Arterials, High Traffic Volume)
Priority 2       Secondary Streets      (Criteria: Collectors, Medium Volume, Steep Grades)

Priority 3       All other Streets         (Criteria: Residential, Low Volume, Cul-de –sacs)

When icy conditions occur in the City, hazardous situations will present themselves in numerous locations at the same time.  It must be realized that salting crews cannot be in all places at all times, and the effect of salting is not immediate.  The City uses pre-wetted salt by spreader application for most deicing operations.  It should be noted that salt is only 20% as effective at 20° degrees as it is as 30° degrees.  At colder temperatures it is even less effective. At very low temperatures, salt/sand may be used.  This becomes a more expensive tactic, coupled with the fact, sand needs to picked back up in the spring with sweeping operations.  For icy or packed snow conditions, we may use a salt/abrasive mixture to provide traction.  These mixtures will be used at intersections where start/stop movements are frequent, on bridges, and at steep hills or curves where slippery conditions make driving hazardous.  The use of salt shall be minimized during extremely cold temperatures.

Anti-icing is a road maintenance strategy that tries to keep the bond between ice and the pavement surface from forming.  It involves applying ice control chemicals before or at the very beginning of a storm at bridges, hills, curves, and other hazardous locations.  Using this strategy reduces total chemical use and allows a higher level of service to the traveling public.


Snowplowing will commence when, in the opinion of the on call supervisor, sufficient snow exists to be a hazard to traffic. Snow events with accumulations of (1) inch or
more will prompt the on call supervisor to prepare for City-wide plowing operations to include all streets and municipal parking lots. Attention is given to City streets according to the designated priorities as follows:

Priority 1   Main Streets (Criteria: Arterials. High Traffic Volume)
Priority 2   Secondary Streets (Collectors, Medium Volume, Steep Grades)
Priority 3   All other Streets (Residential. Low Volume, Cul-de-sacs)

Where steep hills or other safety concerns exist, a street may be advanced to a higher priority for plowing. For operating efficiency some lower priority streets may be done when equipment is in the area rather than doubling back at a later time. This will vary by storm severity.

Plows must make two to four passes down a street to clear it curb to curb.  The City tries to do this at one time so residents can shovel out driveways and sidewalks.  It is best to wait, if possible, until we've finished plowing before shoveling out your driveway approach.

Parked and abandoned vehicles present obstacles to plows attempting to get as close to the curb as possible.  We regularly return to plow snow where vehicles had previously been parked.

When heavy snows are occurring during peak travel times, main streets (arterials) will be continually patrolled. Secondary streets (collectors) will be patrolled as frequently as possible. Low volume residential streets (locals) may not be plowed until storm abates.


Snow removal is necessary after heavy storms or a series of storms where there is limited or no snow storage area. Snow removal does not occur every time plowing operations occur. This will vary depending on the timing of the storm, the amount of precipitation received, and the forecast.

In the days following a heavy storm or series of storms, Public Works crews will remove snow piles from dead ends, municipal parking lots, and cul-de-sacs during normal working hours. This operation will not necessarily be performed after every storm event.

Tips to help with snow removal:
  • Remain patient; we will ensure that all roads are passable as soon as possible. This is our number one priority.
  • Stay off the roads, if possible. The fewer vehicles on the roads, the faster we can get them cleared and have you on your way.
  • Park your vehicles in your driveway.
  • Stay back at least 70' from the rear of a plow truck so the driver can see you. If you can't see the driver in his mirrors he can't see you.
  • Plows may need to back up to properly clear snow from the street. Please stay back at least 70' from the rear of the plow truck.
  • Don't allow your vehicles to hang out into the street..
  • Avoid passing or driving beside plow trucks.
  • Avoid placing snow from your driveway back into the street. Less snow will be pushed into your driveway by passing plow trucks.
  • Remove portable basketball goals, hockey goals, skate board ramps and other structures from the street. This will enable plow trucks to reach the curb and eliminate damage to the truck or portable structures.