MESSAGE FROM YOUR PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT REGARDING OUR WINTER SNOW AND ICE CLEARING OPERATIONS

With our first snowstorm of any accumulation of the season predicted for this Friday, we wanted to get this information out to the public.

MESSAGE FROM YOUR PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT REGARDING OUR WINTER SNOW AND ICE CLEARING OPERATIONS

  • Snow removal operations are performed under emergency conditions. Our drivers work long hours to ensure safe and effective snow removal. If you do have any issues with our service or one of our plow drivers, please email us at publicworks@eltownhall.com  as the supervisors get these emails right away.   Never confront the plow driver directly. When you email us, please provide us with the license plate # of the truck, the issue that you are reporting, the street that the issue happened on, the approximate time the issue happened and your name and contact number so that we can look into it and one of the supervisors can get back to you.  If you can’t get the license # of the truck, we should be able to find out which truck it was knowing the street name that the issue happened on and the approximate time as we can look it up on our GPS.
  • Never pass a snowplow and don’t assume the snowplow drivers can see you. As a rule of thumb, if you cannot see the driver in his mirrors then the snow plow driver can’t see you either.
  • Roads within the Town are treated and plowed in a hierarchical fashion. That order is generally primary Town roads first, then secondary Town roads, town subdivision roads and cul-de-sacs are usually last to get plowed. Any road that has a route number (Rte. 1, Rte. 156, and Rte. 161) is the responsibility of the State to plow.
  • It takes our crews on average about 6-8 hours to complete our clearing efforts at a minimum after the last snowflake has fallen. For those that are clearing their driveways before we are finished, be aware that it is almost impossible for us to prevent the redeposit of snow in driveway areas. To reduce the amount of snow plowed back into your driveway, residents should make every effort to push/shovel the snow to the right (facing the road) at the end of the driveway. If you use a snow blower or have a plow clear your driveway, do not push or blow the snow back into the street.
  • All vehicles should be moved off the streets or cul-de-sacs during large snowstorms, typically 4-6” or snow or more. If we do need a parking ban, we will post it on the Town’s Public Safety Facebook and Instagram pages and on the Town’s website at eltownhall.com.
  • Sidewalks are also completed in the same hierarchical fashion;, we clear the sidewalks on the main roads, business districts and areas around schools first, then we work our way to less used sidewalks.  The Town of East Lyme has two sidewalk clearing units that work thru the Town AFTER the roads are cleared. The Town has over 12 miles of sidewalks so it does take some time to clear them.  The same employees that clear the roads clear the sidewalks and sometimes after longer storms then need to first get some sleep so we get to the sidewalks as soon as we can so please be patient. If you are a resident or business that has a sidewalk in front of your property and can help clear the sidewalk faster than we can get there, we greatly appreciate those efforts.
  • Besides sidewalks, parks, town parking lots and the boardwalk are cleared once roads are completed. All these locations are prioritized just like roads and sidewalks.
  • The Town of East Lyme is not responsible for snow accumulated around mailboxes. Homeowners must remove the snow accumulated around their mailbox. The town is not responsible for mailboxes damaged by snow coming off the plow. If you have a rotted mailbox post or loose attachment of the box to the post, you should replace it in advance so as to not have an issue when we have to push wet heavy snow off the road.  The Water Department also requests that if you have a fire hydrant in front of your house, that you dig it out if possible as we have over 800 fire hydrants in Town so it is a large task for our crews to dig out every hydrant in town. If you know of a fire hydrant that is buried in snow and you can’t dig it out, please call the Water Department at 860-691-4104.
  • If your garbage day coincides with a snowstorm, place your garbage cans within 5-6 ft from the paved surface but not in the actual road. Objects in the street are the biggest deterrent to efficient plowing operations. If we are planning on cancelling our garbage collection for that day, we will post that information on our town website at eltownhall.com.
  • Basketball hoops are not allowed in or adjacent to Town roads. Any damage to a basketball hoop caused by town trucks due to failure of it to be removed from the edge of the road will not be the responsibility of the Town. Please remember that although you may think your hoop is off the road, many rims are protruding into the road and our large dump trucks sometimes catch the rims or nets and knock them over.  If this damages the plow truck, it may slow down the plowing efforts in your neighborhood.
  • We use treated salt and not sand in our deicing efforts. The treated salt is critical to ensuring that the roads are safe. We do, however, recommend that people wash their vehicles at designated facilities on a regular basis in the winter to get any road salts off their vehicles.

SAND/SALT IS AVAILABLE FOR RESIDENTIAL USE AT THE FIELD SERVICES FACILITY ON COLTON ROAD.  BRING YOUR OWN CONTAINER. Supplies are limited.

Our Department is glad to serve the residents and businesses of this great Town.  If you ever have any issues or questions about our winter operations, please do not hesitate to contact us at publicworks@eltownhall.com