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Copyright © 2003 Express Publishing Inc.
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For the week of January 7 - 13, 2004


Equipment failure slows Hailey snow removal

Express Staff Writer

Snow and cold temperatures took their toll on Hailey city equipment last week. City efforts to remove snow from the Main Street median were stymied because the brakes on two hauling trucks froze up and a grader required hydraulic repairs, said Public Works Manager, Ray Hyde.

City crews have removed nearly 900 loads of snow from downtown, or nearly 18,000 tons of snow. Crews had logged 1,190 hours in snow removal time by Monday morning. But there is still much more to clear, said Hyde, who took his first turn at a plow in over four years to give others on the plow crew a needed break.

Capabilities for repairs at the city shop were poor at best, he said. So, snow removal will be slowed from six loads at a time to four.

The Public Works Department has asked that children avoid building snow forts in snow piles in the city right-of-way because as the city gets equipment up and running again, the mounds of snow will be plowed away, especially on corners where visibility is poor.

"The snow piles are dangerous even without us moving snow," Hyde said.

Obstacles in the right of way like trashcans, mailboxes and vehicles slow snowplows and result in higher piles, Hyde said because the snow doesn’t get pushed as far from the center of the road.

"The slower the snowplow the higher the (piles)," Hyde said.

The Public Works Department has issued a some tips for snow management:

  • When cleaning driveways, put the snow in the yard or near the bank on the downstream side of the street so the plow does not push the snow back into the driveway.

  • Pushing snow back into the roadway may impede access by emergency services. City Ordinance prohibits plowing snow across or onto any public street, parking area, alley or sidewalk.

  • Do not park vehicles in the city right-of-way over night. It is the city’s policy to plow at night whenever possible. This reduces the interaction between the plow trucks and both vehicular and pedestrian traffic. Right-of-ways are 80 feet wide on major roadways such as Woodside Boulevard and Eastridge Drive, and 60 feet on most residential streets. The City issues warning tags on vehicles and trailers parked within the right-of-way. Towing is at owners’ expense.

  • Do not place trash containers or mailboxes in the right-of-way during a snow event. Trying to avoid trashcans slows plow crews. The City is not responsible for damage to property.

The Hailey Building Department estimates the current snow load to 40 pounds per square foot as of Monday, Jan 5. Building code requires a roof design load of 100 pounds per square foot. For questions regarding roof snow loads or plowing, please contact the Hailey Building Department at City Hall 788-4221, ext. 19.



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