Here are some the most frequently asked questions about Blue Springs' Snow Removal…
How does the city decide which streets get plowed first?
The City of Blue Springs Public Works Department plows 256 miles of streets within the city. The streets are segregated by traffic volume first. The most heavily traveled roads are assigned as first priority streets. These roads are the main thoroughfares through the city and the major roads in and out of subdivisions. The next classification is second priority roads. These are the connecting roads within subdivisions. The remaining streets are segregated by the grade of the street, or the steepness of the hills on those streets. If the street has a hill that is six percent or greater then the street is assigned to the third priority list. All other streets fall in the residential classification. These streets are predominantly flat and easily negotiated during light snow storms. The first, second and third priority streets receive deicing treatment for virtually every storm. The residential streets are plowed when snow accumulation on the road exceeds two inches. In the case of a severe ice event every street in the system receives deicing treatment in order of their priority ranking.
Why do the city snow plows push snow into my driveway and who is responsible for clearing it?
During normal snow plowing operations, some snow may be left in your driveway. Plows are angled to the right for plowing from the centerline of the street to the curb. For this reason, a certain amount of snow will be deposited in driveways. Snow left in driveways or on sidewalks by the city while snow plowing is the residents and owners responsibility to remove.
I just shoveled my driveway. Why did the city snow plow push snow on it?
When plowing, the snow may end up on the driveway you just shoveled. We apologize for the inconvenience this causes you. If your schedule permits, you may want to wait and clear your driveway after city plows have passed through your street. If it is a significant snowfall, the snowplows will probably be back. Streets are typically opened with one pass through, so that streets can be made passable for drivers as soon as practical. Snowplows may return to open the street curb-to-curb. This is done to clear areas for on-street parking, where it is permitted, and to allow melting snow to drain into catch basins. We regret that you may find some of this snow on your recently shoveled driveway and you have to shovel it again.
SNOW REMOVAL TIP… If your driveway is cleared before the street is completed, clear the area to the right of the driveway if you are facing the house, (the oncoming side). When the plow comes by the snow will dump in this clear area instead of your driveway approach. The more snow you clear from this area, the less will be deposited at your driveway entrance.
Can snow from my driveway be blown into the street?
Snow may not be pushed or blown into the street from private property. The large piles left behind can create hazards for motorists. Please keep this in mind when clearing your driveway. If you hire a private service to clear your driveway or parking lot, let the contractor know.
Who do I contact if a city snow plow hits my mailbox?
If your mailbox gets struck by a city snow plow during operations, please contact the Blue Springs Public Works Department at (816) 228-0195 on normal business days between 7:30am and 4:00pm. A Public Works staff person will review the incident with you and determine the responsibility of replacement. If the damage is caused by the city, the box will be replaced with a standard unit. The city uses a 4”x 4” wood post and a standard design metal mail box for replacements. If the property owner would like a different mailbox or post other than the standard design provided, the owner may receive up to $25 compensation for post replacement and up to $25 for mailbox replacement. Sorry, but the city will not repair or replace decorative mailboxes and decorative posts. Non-standard mailboxes and enclosures placed in the public right of way are at the owner’s risk and responsibility.
What if landscaping or irrigation in the right of way is damaged?
Remember not to landscape with rocks, bricks, timbers, shrubs and other items in the right of way, particularly the within two to four feet of the curb . Snow plows could cause damage and we do not repair or replace landscape materials. Some residents have irrigation in the right of way. This is done at the owner’s risk and responsibility. Keep any irrigation heads away from the edges of the roadway.
Who do I contact if a city snow plow damages my lawn?
If a city snow plow causes lawn damage, please contact the Blue Springs Public Works Department at (816) 228-0195 on normal business days between 7:30am and 4:00pm. You will be placed on a list for spring clean-up once all the snow is melted. Sod and grass damage is restored by city crews with top soil and grass seed.
How fast are snow plows supposed to go?
Snow plows are emergency vehicles, but typically do not exceed the posted speed limit. Snow plows are big, noisy pieces of equipment. It may appear at times that the snow plow operator is driving too fast for road conditions. Many times the engine sound and noise of the plow scraping the pavement give the perception that the truck is flying down the street, when in actuality, they are only moving at 15 to 20 miles per hour. The plows do move faster on open stretches of road to push the snow farther off of the road to ensure there is sufficient space to stack the snow from the next storm.
What if we have an emergency during a snow storm?
The Public Works Department works closely with the Blue Springs Police Department and Central Jackson County Fire Protection District. Anytime they have an emergency that requires snow removal assistance, one of the crews is pulled from their regular route to respond as quickly as possible.
The City of Blue Springs Public Works Department thanks you for your patience and understanding during the winter season.