Winter Storm Watch, Emergency Snow Routes and New Sidewalk Care
Central Missouri is under a Winter Storm Watch through Sunday morning, Jan. 2, 2022. the National Weather Services’ forecast predicts a chance for ice up to one tenth of an inch and snow between 2 and 8 inches, which could impact roadways and other hard surfaces, such as sidewalks and driveways. The City of Sedalia’s Public Works Department wanted to remind residents not to park along Emergency Snow Routes during snow emergencies. Based on current weather predictions, Street Department crews are expected to be pre-treating roadways early Saturday morning, Jan. 1, 2022. Travelers are advised to remain aware and remain a safe distance from heavy snow removal equipment and salt spreaders as they treat roadways and plow snow/ice.
When more than 2 inches of snow/sleet/ice is expected within a 24-hour period, the City declares a snow emergency and the Emergency Snow Routes are put into effect. Parking is prohibited along Emergency Snow Routes once the snow emergency occurs. Emergency Sow Routes help improve traffic flow after a snow storm or significant icing by declaring a parking ban along the designated routes to expedite snow or ice clearing. The Street Department works to keep these designated streets as clear as possible to allow for emergency vehicle use.
During 2020-2021, the City has been repairing and replacing sidewalks in the areas where water system improvements have occurred, those residents with new concrete sidewalks in front of their homes should not use salt on the new concrete surface for removal of ice and snow. Salt can damage concrete by causing corrosion to occur under the surface, leading to discolored, cracked and crumbling concrete. Especially, this first winter for areas with new concrete, Public Works encourages residents and businesses to use sand when necessary to increase traction as it will not cause damage to the new concrete surface.
The link to the map details which city streets are designated Emergency Snow Routes as well as those designated by the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT).
During snow events, Public Works frequently receives calls from residents asking why snow plows leave snow deposited at the end of their driveways or on sidewalks. Snow plows are designed to push snow to the side. Snow then is deposited at the end of driveways and onto sidewalks as a byproduct of plowing the street. Drivers plow at low speeds (10-15 mph) to minimize this issue, but this problem becomes more challenging when there are larger accumulations of snow. For the same reason, snow ends up in driveways and sidewalks, it also ends up in street intersections. Plow drivers do their best to keep these piles (or windrows) small, but their first job is to get the street passable. Once streets have been plowed, crews come back and knock these windrows down as time allows.
Residents should be aware the city does not immediately plow alleys. With over 140 miles of City streets to plow, the first focus is on clearing streets and then working with the Sanitation Department on those alleys that are used for garbage collection.
The City encourages everyone to check for current travel conditions at MoDOT’s “Traveler Info Map” available at their website https://traveler.modot.org/map/.