SANDPOINT — The snow won’t be going anywhere for a while this year, so city staff are making sure residents and business owners understand the ins and outs of snow removal.
With more snow due this season and some possibly coming next week, residents can expect Sandpoint Public Works Director Kody Van Dyk to send out the plows once snow accumulates between two and four inches. The most important thing to remember during that kind of snowy weather is that all vehicles are parked outside of zones designated on the snow plow routes. These areas need to be clear for the plows to do their work, and if any cars obstruct the path, they can be towed by the Sandpoint Police Department. When it comes to residential routes, parking is allowed on the side of the street with odd house numbers on odd-numbered calendar days, while even-numbered calendar days mean parking is permitted on the even side of the street.
Sandpoint snow routes are separated into three different sections. The emergency route puts a priority on key streets like Division Avenue, Boyer Avenue, Cedar Street and other important roadways that link residents to key emergency services.
Neighborhoods within city limits, like those between Cedar and Larch streets, are qualified as residential routes, while the downtown core streets constitute the downtown business routes. Finally, a few select roads around important industrial centers like Litehouse Foods are defined as commercial routes. The different designations help city officials set priorities and ensure that traffic isn’t blocked by the plows, especially during severe winter storms where careful management is critical.
The severity of the weather can also make a difference on when snowplowing occurs. Normally, the city saves on resources by waiting to send out the plows until snowing ceases. However, in particularly bad storms, public works staff may try to mitigate obstructions by getting a head start on the work.