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Here’s the lowdown on snow parking rules

Snow parking regulations went into effect Saturday, Dec. 1.

The City will use its emergency sirens this year to announce any snow parking regulations.

Five guidelines for parking during the snow season are:

  • Anticipate parking bans and emergencies.
  • Don’t park on snow routes at night.
  • During a snow emergency, park on the proper sides of residential streets between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.
  • Clear your sidewalks of snow and ice.
  • Clear parking lots and driveways for which you are responsible, without pushing snow into adjacent streets, alleys or sidewalks.

The City has multiple ways community members can verify the snow parking situation:

  • Call 864-SNOW.
  • Watch Cable Channel 16.
  • Visit the City’s website.
  • Listen to WPXZ-497 AM Radio 1650.
  • Signup for e-mail updates about snow conditions.

Residents with questions or requests about snow removal should call the Division of Streets and Sanitation, (847) 866-2940.

During a snow route parking ban, main thoroughfares, or snow routes, are cleared first. Permanent red, white and blue signs are posted to indicate that parking is illegal on these streets between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m. after the accumulation of at least two inches of snow.

Sirens will sound at 8:15 p.m. on nights when snow route parking bans are in effect. Even if plows have been through, snow removal operations may require return visits by city trucks. The fine for violating the snow route-parking ban is $50 plus towing and storage charges. Snow route parking bans can be in effect for one night or more, depending on the snowfall. Community members moving cars to nearby side streets should be sure to follow the snow clearing regulations for that side street.

After an accumulation of four inches or more, a snow emergency may be declared. The City’s emergency sirens will sound at 7:15 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. on snow emergency days. Snow emergencies apply to streets with parking on both sides which are not posted as snow routes and are plowed over a two-day period; however snow emergencies may be extended if conditions require it.   During an emergency, community members should not park on even-numbered sides of the street on even days between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m., and should not park on odd sides of the street on odd numbered days between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.

Permanent signs indicating alternate side parking rules are found on every block that is affected. Cars parked illegally are subject to ticketing and towing. If towed, cars will be returned to the vicinity from which it was towed.

For vehicles that are towed, the fine is $100. Vehicles that are only ticketed are fined $25. Most streets with parking on one side have permanent "ODD date" or "EVEN date" signs that allow them to be plowed during snow emergencies.

Community members are reminded that snow route parking bans and snow emergencies can occur consecutively.

Mounds of snow left at the curb by City plows are unavoidable. Work crews cannot stop to clear driveways as this occurs.

Although the City does not plow alleys, the city continues to remove garbage and recycling, and its trucks will keep alleys passable during most snowstorms. To have an alley plowed, neighbors should work together and share the cost of one of the many private plowing companies listed in the Yellow Pages.

Homeowners and businesses are responsible for clearing sidewalks adjacent to their properties within 24 hours after a four-inch snowfall. If snow is packed and difficult to remove, it’s acceptable to use salt or sand to make sidewalks passable.

Sidewalks should be completely cleared to allow everyone, including people with disabilities and the elderly, to travel freely using the sidewalks instead of the streets.

When the snow is wet and heavy, all residents should use extra caution to avoid injury.   Landlords are responsible for keeping sidewalks, parking lots and all common areas, including open stairwells, free from all hazardous conditions at all times.

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