Snow and Ice Control PDF Print E-mail

The average annual snow fall in Iowa is approximately 33 inches. However, we all know how unpredictable our weather can be. At Field Services, we rely on the most current meteorological information to predict our future needs. Keeping the community mobile is a top priority for the City and we take a serious approach to the problems associated with snow and ice control.

The goal of the snow and ice control activity is to maintain and operate an effective and efficient transportation network by providing a systematic snow and ice control program. A snow and ice control plan has been developed to facilitate this objective. The City's policy is to provide maximum service on major arterial streets and collector roads to safely and orderly move the traffic on the City's 420 miles of paved streets, 33 miles of paved alleys, 69 miles of dirt streets, and 44 miles of dirt alleys.

The City of Sioux City attempts to plow all streets within 72 hours of a four inch snowfall. Snow accumulations less than two inches is typically handled with material spreader trucks. When snow accumulations reach two inches or more, plowing is initiated on the streets following the snow route system. The Snow Route system consists of three categories: Priority 1 - hospital and emergency routes, arterial streets, transit bus system routes that are major traffic carriers, and major business districts; Priority 2 - remaing transit bus system routes, through and collector streets, other business districts, residential streets, cul-de-sacs, and dead ends; Priority 3 - paved alleys will be plowed as the last priority. Dirt alleys are cleared on a request basis. If it continues to snow, crews may be required to stay on the Priority 1 streets until the snowfall stops.

The snow removal equipment consists of 29 truck plows, 6 motor graders, 6 front-end loaders, 14 material spreaders and 3 snow blowers which are readied as soon as snow is forecast. Personnel are assigned to 12-hour shifts (7 a.m.–7 p.m. and 7 p.m.–7 a.m.) and the 12-hour shifts are continued until such time as the snow has been sufficiently removed to go back to normal 8-hour shifts.

Snow and ice control is a difficult and time-consuming operation. We need your help to enable us to clear the streets more quickly and completely. Crews can do a better job of plowing when vehicles are not parked on the street. We ask that residents park their vehicles off the street during snow removal operations. Emergency snow routes are designated by signs bearing a white snowflake on a blue background. There is no parking in these areas from 3 a.m. to 6 a.m. During downtown snow pick up operations, parking is banned in these areas and announcements will be made on radio and television stations, as well as the newspaper as to when the no parking goes into effect.

The equipment we use to clear snow from streets may leave a ridge of snow across your driveway. It is the responsibility of the property owner to remove the ridge left by our snow plowing equipment. Equipment operators do not clear snow from driveways. When shoveling your driveway approach, move the snow to the right or left, but NOT in the street.