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Posted on: January 4, 2018

Highway Dept. Winter Guidance

It’s Snowbodies Business, It’s Everybodies Business

The holidays are now behind us and a white Christmas we had indeed!  Snow can help set the mood for the holidays here in upstate New York, but the temperatures being arctic are not the norm for this time of year.  This has proven to be a challenge when trying to provide safe roads for travel.  The Highway Department crews were extremely busy during the Christmas/New Year’s holiday with plowing and salting, all in all a success.

I would like to take this opportunity to offer some winter guidance to all in helping provide safer roads.  Shoveling, snow blowing or plowing snow into the road or the shoulder is illegal.  It’s also unsafe and counter-productive to the Highway’s efforts in providing safe roads for all users. This is not an effort just for vehicles, but for pedestrians as well.  Joggers, walkers and bicyclists all deserve the same safe road benefits, hence the reason it is illegal for placing snow in the road and the shoulder of the road.  I have requested the police start issuing tickets for this reason, it has become way too commonplace in the past couple years.

Private plow contractors expose you as the hiring entity as well as themselves to all liabilities should anyone get hurt or in an accident from the snow placed in or across the road.  When plowing parking lots or driveways it is recommended to have some style of amber light on the truck to warn others of a potential hazard.  This is recommended while engaged in the operation, however once the operation is complete, the amber lights should be shut off while driving to next site.  Leaving them on discredits the Town Highway vehicles that are on the road actually plowing and salting.  It is just one more distraction to other drivers when every fourth or fifth vehicle looks like a Christmas tree driving down the road, so please shut them off when in transit.

The Town uses mailboxes as “guidelines” for plowing the roads.  They are the one common denominator throughout the Town to identify the road’s edge.  Placing your garbage totes or recycle bins out in front of the mailboxes is a recipe for displacements.  Our job is to clear the roads and shoulders from snow, however if these items are in the road or shoulder, they become victim to our operations.  Please keep your garbage totes, recycle bins out of the path of our operations so we may provide the most efficient job possible and safe winter roads.

Please drive conducive to the conditions.  All wheel drive and four wheel drive helps with better control in such inclement conditions, but it does not change the stopping capabilities.

Joe Herbst

Superintendent of Highways

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