For more information, please contact:
City of Spirit Lake Snow Removal Plan Public Works Department Operations
Winter Weather Conditions
Each year, the city of Spirit Lake, Idaho experiences, on average, approximately 52 inches of snowfall. Winter weather conditions typically occur between November and March. The rate of accumulation of snowfall, moisture content, temperature, time of day, visibility, wind velocity and duration are all variables that interact to create unique road conditions for each storm.
Responding to winter weather conditions requires a collaboration between the City and its citizens. The City currently dedicates its entire Public Works department staff to operate equipment and tackle snow, ice, and slush. Their mission is to provide the greatest level of service to the traveling public. The City monitors winter weather conditions daily to provide a proactive response and strives to continuously improve operations to best serve citizens.
The goal of the City’s snow plan is to establish a system of priorities that facilitate keeping winter traffic moving as safely as possible. Also included in the snow plan are some tips on how to best deal with snow and ice more effectively.
Winter Weather: Spirit Lake has a Plan
As in previous years, when it snows 4 inches or more, City crews will begin to plow all streets, including all residential streets. The response plan provides:
· Proactive pretreatment of high priority, heavily traveled roads and intersections
· Crew members prepared in advance for nighttime/early morning coverage
· Emphasis on streets with emergency services and schools/bus routes
· Emphasis on streets with steep grades or curves
· Seasonal parking rules (see list below)
· Proactive cleanup in preparation for forecasted snow events
It is impractical, both physically and fiscally, to give all streets equal level of services and maintain near continuous coverage. Consistent with other municipalities, available resources focus on the streets most traveled and on those that provide access to essential services. Streets with higher intensity use have a higher priority for snow removal. Residential streets require proportionally more time for snow removal for less traffic served and therefor have a lower priority.
Seasonal Parking Rules
No Parking Zones- There shall be no parking of any vehicles during the prohibited period of November 1st through March 31st from 2:00 AM through 6:00 AM on Maine Street from the west city limits to 5th Avenue, inclusive, as outlined in Spirit Lake City Code 6-1-3A and 6-1-3B. This allows for adequate snow plowing of the Maine Street corridor and adjacent parking.
Snow Removal Obstruction Prohibited- It shall be illegal for any vehicle to be parked in such a manner as to inhibit snow removal operations after notification to the owner/operator by a City employee or official, as outlined in Spirit Lake Code 6-1-3C.
The Right-of-Way- Any personal items in the city right-of-way need to be removed by November 1st each year. Cars, trucks, boats, trailers, basketball hoops, and miscellaneous items all need to be removed before plowing season. Vehicles left in the right-of-way are subject to citation, towing at the owner’s expense, or both.
· It is the homeowner’s responsibility to clear the snow around mailboxes and newspaper boxes.
· Items left in the right-of-way are there at your own risk and could be struck by a snowplow during plowing.
· In the event of damage to snow removal equipment caused by items in the right-of-way, the property owner may be responsible for the cost of damages to City equipment.
· Garbage/recycling cans need to be removed within 12 hours of pick up from the street and are at risk of being damaged by snowplows. Cost of replacement of damaged cans will not be covered by the City.
Deposit of Snow, Ice, Rocks, or Debris
Unlawful Act- Unlawful Act: It is unlawful for any operator of snow removal equipment or the owner of any land upon which snow removal equipment is operated to place or otherwise permit, sanction, approve or cause the placement of any snow onto public property or right-of-way upon its removal from privately owned land or for any person to deposit, cause to be deposited, thrown upon or move onto any public property or right-of-way any snow/ice, dirt, soil, rocks or debris which has accumulated on any private property, that constitutes a safety hazard or impedance to City workers, and/or the general public. Spirit Lake City Code 5-2-4A.
Sidewalks- It is the duty and responsibility of the property owner to maintain any sidewalk abutting his/her property in a clean, snow/ice free condition, and ensure the surface of said sidewalk is maintained in a safe and proper physical condition as outlined in Spirit Lake City Code 7-2-4.
Areas of Concern- Keep ADA ramps, mailboxes, and fire hydrants free of snow and ice. Keep everyone’s safety in mind!
Have a Winter Plan
· Have adequate snow shovels or a working snow blower
· Consider purchasing salt or sand to help tackle ice and slippery conditions
· Shake tree branches of heavy snow. Snow can cause damage to healthy trees and fall on pedestrians passing by.
· Know who in your neighborhood might need help with shoveling or other winter work and offer to help. Winter can be especially tough on seniors and disabled individuals.
Frequently Asked Questions
When do you sand?
Sand and/or deicer is used in combination with plowing to provide reasonable driving surfaces in icy conditions. Spot sanding will be done at specific locations on primary and secondary routes, and at inclined intersection approaches as needed.
Why has a snowplow left a berm across my driveway?
Unfortunately, the city snowplows are NOT equipped with snow gates. Our goal is to clear the roadway for safe travel, and berms are an inconvenient result of plowing.
· Some citizens who may be incapable of plowing or shoveling their snow berms may be eligible to be added to the City’s “No-Berm” list. To be eligible you must meet certain criteria by providing proof of physical limitations, injury, or illness from your physician, with no one else living in your residence who is able to address the berm. You may contact City Hall for arrangements to be added to that registry.
Who do I contact if I have a complaint?
Please contact Public Works Department at City Hall. Please do not try to stop plow drivers and address your complaints with them. They are doing the best they can with the pressure of getting the whole city plowed.
Documents & Forms