The Roads Crew
Hours of Operation
Public Works Office: 7 am - 3:30 pm Monday through Friday
Winter brings challenges for our community in the form of ice and snow. Although conditions can vary greatly throughout the valley, our Public Works department trains each year to prepare and meet the community's needs. We conduct training classes each fall with all staff to get them in the winter mindset and go over any changes to operations. The Fleet staff inspect all plow trucks and winter response equipment to ensure they are ready to deploy at the first sign of a storm.
Winter storms are categorized into one of three classifications depending on the level of precipitation.
Snow accumulations of no more than 1 inch in depth with imminent or present icy conditions and temperatures at or below freezing.
Response: Treatment of the roadway with abrasives. Resources will involve one or more plows depending on the size of the area affected by the storm.
Why do we do it this way? Plows are not effective on ice or snowfall less than 2 inches, and instead damage equipment and road surfaces. Adding abrasives in the form of ice slicer, sand, and cinder help with vehicle traction.
Weather conditions include snow accumulations from 2 to 6 inches with current and forecasted temperatures at or below freezing.
Response: Deployment of a full crew (six plows) across all affected areas with plowing and abrasives used as needed.
Weather conditions include snow accumulations of more than 6 inches with current and forecasted temperatures below freezing
Response: Deployment of a full crew (six plows) across all affected areas, with plowing and abrasives used as needed. If the storm is forecasted to last across several shifts or days, a second crew is formed from other public works staff and deployed in a 12-hour shift rotation. This provides 24-hour coverage for the community until the storm has abated and driving conditions return to near-normal.
Our goal is to ensure that the most heavily traveled roads (arterial roads) and school bus routes are addressed first. The plow crews will not move on to lower priority roads until they are sure the high-traffic routes have been made as safe as possible. Sometimes this means that they must clear roads multiple times, especially when snow is still falling. At times, the snow is falling faster than they can clear it, so second priority and residential roads may not be addressed until the storm has passed.
- Bear Valley Road
- Lower Valley Road
- Lower San Juan
- Rolling Oak
- Upper Pinedale
- Stirrup Way
Opening vs Clearing
Our approach to snow removal strives to open all roads as quickly as we can after the storm begins. This means our first effort is an 'up and back' approach. Only after we have opened all roads and made them safe for travel will we return and clear the road, pushing the remaining snow onto the shoulders where possible.
We recognize that some residents may have cleared their driveways before our final pass, resulting in the windrow blocking the cleaned driveway. Our plow drivers do what they can to minimize this impact but in many cases, they may be unable to avoid blocking driveways as their focus is to make the roads as safe and passable as they can.
We continually focus on improving our service and minimizing the impact storms have on residents' travel plans, but during heavy snowfalls, it can take days to return all roads to a safe, drivable condition. It is best to prepare to be snowbound so that you can weather the storms in comfort.