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Winter Maintenance Policy

Purpose:Snowplow and Salt Truck

To provide a safe roadway system during the winter months by operating effective and efficient winter road maintenance services. During winter months, the Department of Public Services is responsible for snow and ice control on City major roads, including industrial routes, five miles of school designated bus routes, and 246 miles of local streets. The Road Commission for Oakland County maintains several of the other major mile roads within the City. Staff from the Department of Public Services’ Division of Public Works is responsible for providing the winter maintenance work force. In emergency situations, employees from the Engineering, Parks, and Building Maintenance Divisions also assist in snow removal activities.

Objectives for Winter Maintenance Operations:

  1. Reduce the risk to the traveling public associated with snowy and icy road conditions.
  2. Support emergency operations for the Police and Fire Departments.
  3. Prioritize the school bus and industrial routes.
  4. Enhance commerce within the City.
  5. Provide cost effective and fiscally sound use of winter maintenance funds.
  6. Continue to seek new, innovative, cost effective, and environmentally friendly solutions to winter maintenance methods, materials, and equipment.
  7. Promote better communications with adjoining communities and road agencies to share information on the condition of road surfaces.

Priorities:

The City of Farmington Hills has identified three levels of snow and ice control priorities for major and local roads. The priorities are classified by monitoring weather radar, forecasts, and by employee observations of actual road conditions. Additional information on road conditions is provided by the Patrol Division of the City’s Police Division, as well as communications with neighboring road agencies. The priorities include the following categories:

CATEGORY 1
Snowfall Less Than Four Inches in Depth

Major roads, industrial routes, and specific local streets with steep grades--58 miles of roads that are traveled by most of the vehicular traffic as well as emergency vehicles. These 58 miles of roads are divided into six routes that are plowed and de-iced on an as-needed basis 24 hours per day, seven days per week through the duration of the storm. Attention is given to all six routes concurrently.

Bus routes—2.5 miles of local roads designated by the Farmington Public School District (FPSD) as ingress/egress to specific school buildings within residential areas. These roads are plowed and de-iced on an as-needed basis through the duration of the storm, the same as the major road routes they are associated with.

Local roads—246 miles of local, residential streets are spot de-iced (liquid or granular) on an as-needed basis during regular business hours, Monday through Friday at the conclusion of the storm.

CATEGORY 2
Snowfall of Four or More Inches Throughout the City of Farmington Hills

Major roads, industrial routes, and specific local streets with steep grades--58 miles of roads that are traveled by most of the vehicular traffic as well as emergency vehicles. These 58 miles of road are divided into six routes that are plowed and de-iced on an as-needed basis 24 hours per day, seven days per week through the duration of the storm. Attention is given to all six routes concurrently.

Bus routes—2.5 miles of local roads designated by the Farmington Public School District (FPSD) as ingress/egress to the school buildings within specific residential areas. These roads are plowed and de-iced on an as-needed basis through the duration of the storm the same as the major road routes they are associated with.

Local roads—246 miles of local streets are plowed edge to edge and spot de-iced at the end of the storm, once the major road/industrial routes have been returned to a safe, travelable condition. The entire City is divided into six six-square-mile East/West tiers. Each tier is given attention concurrently and the specific starting location of the plowing operation in each tier is changed for each storm to assure equitable treatment of the residents. Plowing and clean-up operations will continue on 12- to 15-hour days, seven days per week, until all local streets have been cleared and returned to safe travel. Local road plowing operations may be delayed one day if weather conditions permit, in those sections where trash and recycling pickup are scheduled the same day as plowing would occur in order to avoid spillage, knock-overs, and damage to the containers.

In addition, should weather conditions deteriorate during the local road plowing operations causing the major roads to become unsafe, local street operations will be suspended until the major roads can be returned to safe travel conditions.

CATEGORY 3
Snowfall of More Than Eight Inches

Major roads, industrial routes, and specific local streets with steep grades--58 miles of roads that are traveled by most of the vehicular traffic as well as emergency vehicles. These 58 miles of road are divided into six routes that are plowed and de-iced on an as-needed basis 24 hours per day, seven days per week through the duration of the storm. Attention is given to all six routes concurrently.

Bus routes—2.5 miles of local roads designated by the Farmington Public School District (FPSD) as ingress/egress to the school buildings within specific residential areas. These roads are plowed and de-iced on an as-needed basis through the duration of the storm the same as the major road routes they are associated with.

Local roads—246 miles of local streets are plowed edge to edge and spot de-iced at the end of the storm once the major road/industrial routes have been returned to a safe, travelable condition. The entire City is divided into six six-square-mile East/West tiers. Each tier is given attention concurrently. Plowing and clean-up of operations will continue on 12- to 15-hour days, seven days per week, until all local streets have been cleared and returned to safe travel conditions, recognizing that this type of winter weather event will require additional days to return all City streets to normal operation.

Winter events of this magnitude may result in the declaration of a snow emergency, prohibiting all on-street parking. Likewise, private contractors may be used to assist City staff in the snow removal operations.

Roadway Jurisdiction Map

Goals:

  • Following a significant snowstorm (four or more inches in a 24-hour period), plow all local roads within two days recognizing that deeper and wetter snowfalls will require more time to complete, depending on the severity and duration of the storm.
  • Apply de-icing chemicals as needed to maintain roads in a passable condition.

Communications:

The City of Farmington Hills will receive information and comments from the public at the following telephone number: (248) 871-2850.

Winter Weather Emergency Policy:

Please note: In accordance with City Code of Ordinances Article VI, Section 30-726 through 735, the City Manager has the authority to declare a “Winter Snow Emergency” should weather conditions warrant. During a winter weather emergency, all vehicles must be removed from City streets to allow snowplow vehicles to clear our streets as safely, quickly, and completely as possible.

Should the City Manager deem it necessary to declare a snow emergency, residents will be notified via broadcasts and telecasts on local television and radio stations, the City website, City Listserve, and Nixle; and, if time allows, a press release will be published in local newspapers.

Chapter 30, Article VI SNOW EMERGENCIES Beginning at Sec. 30-726