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					Vol. 43 No. 4                                                                                                Fall 2006

   Written Snow and Ice Control Plan and
 Policy Documents are Absolutely Essential
      For Winter Maintenance Agencies
                                     Part II
                           Administrative and Planning
                                          Duane E. “Dewey” Amsler Sr.
                                           AFM Engineering Services

I   n Part I of this series we dis-
    cussed the benefits of written
    plan and policy documents and
a recommended process for creat-
ing a document that is likely to find
                                          As an example:

                                          Shall and Must =
                                          a required course of action

                                          Should and Recommended =
                                                                               likely to be a large volume of calls
                                                                               during winter weather events. If the
                                                                               agency is able to provide weather,
                                                                               road condition and treatment prog-
                                                                               ress information, how the public can
broad based acceptance. Part II will      a recommended course of action       access that information should be
discuss crafting the content of the                                            detailed here as well as listing other
plan so it can guide snowfighting         May = an optional course of          locations and sources of information
operations.                               action                               about winter maintenance activities.

GENERAL                                 Consider a statement that alerts the   A section on how customers can
INTRODUCTORY                            reader that the resources available    help facilitate winter maintenance
SECTION                                 are finite and during and immedi-      operations should appear in this
                                        ately after intense and unexpected     section. Items like parking regula-
Each plan should create a roadmap
                                        weather events, despite heroic ef-     tions, snow emergency routes, snow
for readers. A general introductory
                                        forts by crews, it may be impossible   removal operations, tire/chain re-
section should contain informa-
                                        to restore bare/wet pavement condi-    quirements, abandoned vehicles and
tion that will guide the reader in
                                        tions.                                 generally not driving during events
terms of: content, purpose, how
                                                                               should appear here.
the document was created, sources
of information that appear in the
document, the general philosophy of
                                        AND                                    Another section on how custom-
agency snow and ice control opera-
                                        COOPERATION                            ers can help by keeping trash cans,
                                        This section should contain how        basketball devices, large obstacles,
tions and how the agency will use
                                        “customers” can contact the high-      snow forts, and fencing away from
the document. It should also define
                                        way agency to request service or       the road, and removing snow from
many of the terms that appear in
                                        report bad road conditions. It might   around hydrants can be helpful.
the document.
                                        include telephone numbers, e-mail      A reminder that it is illegal to re-
                                        addresses and/or website URLs.         locate snow into the road should
                                        Customers should be urged to use       also appear here (this applies to
                                        restraint in this area, particularly   both residential and commercial
                                        with telephone contacts, as there is
                                                                                                    continued on page 2
 Written Snow and Ice Control Plan and Policy                                         (continued from page 1)

snow plowing/blowing/shoveling            It is important for the agency and           • other situations unique to the
operations). A copy of the applicable     its customers to realize that avail-           local community
section of State or Provincial law        able resources dictate the level
should be placed in the Appendix.         of service that can be provided.             PLANNING
This is a good location for safety tips   Although there may be political              This section is primarily to provide a
about removing and storing snow           pressure to put a happy face on the          blueprint for the agency to conduct
from driveways and walk ways, and         service capabilities, it is wise to state    the year-around activities that relate
general winter safety driving and         only what can actually be provided.          to snow and ice control. A good ap-
preparedness information. A section       Candid statements about not be-              proach is to use the seasons of the
on how the agency will deal with          ing able to provide the goal level           calendar year to describe agency ac-
plow damage to mailboxes, turf and        of service during unusually severe           tivities that should be accomplished
other features should also appear         and long duration events, and other          in a timely manner, in those time
here.                                     circumstances that may diminish              frames.
                                          the capability of the work force are a
This section is a good location for       good idea.                                   Spring activities may include:
a multi agency organizational and
communications directory as it re-        Define how level of service is deter-        • equipment breakdown and storage
lates to snow and ice control and         mined. A good way to do this is to           • materials inventory
other emergency situations.               establish a “design storm” intensity         • review the effectiveness of
                                          and duration that may be exceeded              operational procedures
A listing of the roads within the         about 10% of the time in any given           • highway inspection
political subdivision that are NOT        year (the 90th percentile storm) for         • analysis of winter data
maintained by the agency is always        your area. This will vary consider-          • review the effectiveness of
helpful. Here contact information         ably depending on location, but 1              personnel and staffing policies
for the responsible maintenance           inch of snow per hour for a period           • review equipment performance
agency should also be provided.           of 12 hours may be a good start-               and maintenance activities
                                          ing point. Once this is established,         • review contract, interagency and
LEVEL OF SERVICE                          use treatment cycle time capability            inter municipality cooperative
This is where the agency describes        (based on the availability of people           performance
what customers can expect in terms        and equipment), and the type of              • clean-up of winter materials
of snow and ice service.                  treatment capability (solid chemi-           • damage repair
In addition to providing customer         cals, abrasives/chemical mixtures,           • soliciting feedback from custom-
expectations, it will be the standard     liquid chemicals, plow only, etc.) to          ers on the past winter service
of accountability in the event of         determine how you will describe                performance
slippery roads and related litigation     level of service. Here you can cite the
Common descriptors include:               other factors that interact to impact        Summer action items may include:
                                          cycle time and routing decisions.
• when treatments are supposed to                                                      • ordering/bidding materials and
  begin after a storm starts              These include:                                 equipment
• road conditions at various points                                                    • drainage improvements
  in time, during and after a winter      • higher volume/slow traffic moving          • obstacle remediation
  weather event                             roads                                      • drainage structure adjustments
• the level of effort that will be pro-   • critical locations                         • practical improvements to high
  vided for various storm conditions        hills                                        snow and ice accident areas
• the priority classification of the        curves                                     • training for new operators and
  entire road system (A, B, C; 1,2,3;       intersections                                staff
  Red, Yellow, Blue, etc.),                 school bus routes
• treatment timing and sequence             transit routes                             Fall activity items may include:
  (priorities) for various storm            emergency services considerations
  conditions by time of day and day         high snow and ice accident                 • finalize all cooperative and con-
  of week                                   locations and other problematic              tract agreements for snow and ice
• the time(s) service will be               areas                                        equipment and services
  diminished or not provided                business routes                            • make sure weather information
• when “clean up” operations will           snow emergency routes                        and other information systems are
  begin                                                                                  fully functional

2                                                                                 SALT & Highway Deicing / Winter 2006
 Written Snow and Ice Control Plan and Policy                                     (continued from page 2)

• start sequentially bringing snow       These would include: post storm          APPENDED
  and ice equipment on line              meetings, post season meetings, pre      INFORMATION
• make necessary changes to plan         season meetings, various training fo-
                                                                                  This section should contain a listing
  and policy document (see Part I of     rums, various committee activities,
                                                                                  and location of the appended infor-
  this series)                           and “living document” provisions for
                                                                                  mation that appears at the end of
• commit necessary operational           the plan and policy document.
                                                                                  the document. These may include:
  changes to writing
• refresher training for seasoned        RECORD KEEPING                           • beat or route maps
  operators and staff and continu-       A basic record keeping system for        • personnel policy documents
  ing training for new operators and     snow and ice control operations is a     • relevant portions of union
  staff                                  very valuable asset. It has a number       agreements
• snow and ice meetings with             of benefits including being a power-     • personnel and equipment rosters
  union(s)                               ful tool for use in:                     • a listing and locations/maps of
• calibrate materials spreaders          • defense against frivolous tort           parking sites for use during storms
• mark obstacles and do “dry runs”         claims and other allegations             and clean up operations
• trim overhanging trees                 • development of budget request          • snow storage/disposal locations
• install snow fence                       and defining impacts of budget         • maps showing emergency snow
• mark drainage structures                 reductions                               routes and level of service
• coordination meetings with all in-     • measurement of the efficiency and        classifications
  volved agencies                          effectiveness of agency operations     • locations of emergency shelters
• establish and reestablish contact      • measurement of the success or          • copies of any applicable local laws
  with media and other information         failure of improvement efforts           or ordinances
  outlets                                Here the agency should define the        • copies of applicable portions of
                                         essential content, or provide ap-          State or Provincial Highway Law,
Ongoing winter activities may            pended examples of: operator               Insurance Law and Vehicle and
include:                                 reports or trip tickets, supervisor        traffic Law
• getting psychologically, physically    reports, equipment operation and
   and operationally prepared for        maintenance reports and
   the first and succeeding storms
                                                                                  CLOSING STATEMENT
                                         management reports.
   (whenever they arrive),                                                        The preceding is necessarily in-
• review performance after each                                                   complete, as there are other items
                                         RISK MANAGEMENT                          to consider on a local basis, but it
   storm and make adjustments as
   necessary                             In this section the agency should        should give a general idea of the
• maintain materials inventory           describe activities and programs         more important items that should
   control                               that relate to snow and ice risk         be included in a well crafted written
• timely performance of safety res-      management. These may include:           snow and ice control plan and policy.
   toration and cleanup operations
   after each storm should include:      • insurance or self-insurance status     Do You Know Snow?
achieving and maintaining                • safety training programs               If you know snow, the 2007 APWA
satisfactory pavement surface            • programs to identify and               North American Snow Conference
conditions                                 remediate high accident locations      in Saint Paul, MN, April 22-25, 2007
clearing sight distance problems         • weather and road condition infor-      is looking for you. You’ve spent a
pushing back                               mation systems (internal and for       lot of time in the snow, so come
maintaining “problematic” areas            public distribution)                   share your knowledge and exper-
drainage restoration                     • accident investigation/                tise with fellow snowfighters across
clearing bridges safety                    documentation procedures               North America. You don’t have to
appurtenances as necessary               • training on agency policy and          be a professional speaker. Fresh and
clearing drifted areas                     procedure                              innovative twists to snowfighting
clearing sidewalks                       • training on how to create and          issues are encouraged. Call for
clearing hydrants                          maintain records                       presentations submission deadline
clearing crosswalks                      • environmental risk management          is September 15, 2006.
clearing signs and signals                 (details will be covered in the next
This is a good location to include the     article in this series).
“continuous improvement” activi-
ties that occur throughout the year.
                                                                                                        continued on page 4

SALT & Highway Deicing / Winter 2006                                                                                     3
    Written Snow and Ice Control Plan and Policy                                  (continued from page 3)

Don’t hesitate, submit your idea        sustaining award-winning programs         The Excellence in Storage Award is
today! For more information             recognized in the first 19 years of the   part of the Salt Institute’s Sensible
or to submit a proposal, go to          program.                                  Salting Program – an educational
www.apwa.net/speakatsnow or                                                       program for salt customers on how
contact Ashley Scherzer at              “With more than 60 years operating        to store and apply salt in an envi-
education@apwa.net or                   experience in salting roads to main-      ronmentally sound manner. Over
800-848-APWA (2492).                    tain winter safety and mobility, we’ve    the award competition’s 19 years,
                                        learned that environmental problems       just 125 excellent programs have
2006 Excellence in                      are potentially severe, always local      been recognized. Among the 48
Storage Winners                         and entirely preventable,” explained      facilities cited for continuing excel-
Announced                               Salt Institute president Richard L.       lence Buffalo Grove, IL, has won the
Ten state and local government          Hanneman, in announcing the award         excellence designation 18 times;
transportation facilities in the U.S.   winners. “Over those years, we’ve         Arlington Heights, IL has won 14
and Canada earned the 2006 Excel-       learned that inadequate salt storage      times. States with the greatest
lence in Storage Award from the         is the likeliest path to environmental    number of winners were Illinois
Salt Institute. The award recognizes    contamination. These agencies are         (14), New Jersey (13) and Connecti-
high standards of environmental         doing an outstanding job of environ-      cut (10).
consciousness and effective man-        mental protection in salt storage,
agement of winter materials storage.    establishing a standard to which          The Salt Institute website has
Another thirty-seven facilities were    other agencies aspire. The invest-        more information about the Ex-
cited for “continuing excellence” for   ments represented here are paying         cellence in Storage Award (http:
                                        rich dividends.”                          //www.saltinstitute.org/40.html).

    2006 Continuing Excellence in
    Storage Awards
    Village of Addison, IL              Connecticut DOT, Willington               New Jersey DOT, Elmer Yard #420,
    Village of Arlington Heights,        Maintenance Facility,                     Pittgrove, NJ
     Arlington Heights, IL               Willington, CT                           New Jersey DOT, Folsom Yard
    Beaver Township, Bloomsburg, PA     City of Elgin, IL                          #451, Folsom, NJ
    City of Brampton Works and          City of Geneva Dept. of Public Works,     New Jersey DOT, Glassboro Yard
     Transportation, Sandalwood          Geneva, IL                                #417, Glassboro, NJ
     Parkway facility, Brampton, ON     Village of Hanover Park,                  New Jersey DOT, Mount Laurel
    Village of Buffalo Grove,            Hanover Park, IL                          Yard #468, Mt. Laurel, NJ
     Buffalo Grove, IL                  City of Houghton, Houghton, MI            New Jersey DOT, Red Lion Yard
    Town of Clifton Park,               Village of Lake Zurich, IL                 #434, NJ
     Clifton Park, NY                   Lockport Township, IL                     New Jersey DOT, West Deptford
    Columbia County, Wyocena, WI        City of Lynchburg, Lynchburg, VA           Yard #413, West Deptford, NJ
    Connecticut DOT, Glastonbury        City of Marquette, MI                     Village of Northbrook, IL
     Maintenance Facility,              McHenry County, Woodstock, IL             Town of North Salem, NY
     Glastonbury, CT                    Mount Prospect Public Works,              Town of Orangetown,
    Connecticut DOT, Hebron Salt         Mt. Prospect, IL                          Orangeburg, NY
     Shed, Bolton, CT                   Macomb County, MI                         Village of Orland Park, IL
    Connecticut DOT, Middletown Salt     (Warren facility)                        Region of Peel Copper Road Yard
     Storage Facility, Middletown, CT   New Jersey DOT, Berlin Yard # 415          Facility, Brampton, ON
    Connecticut DOT, Miller Avenue,      Salt Storage Facility, Berlin, NJ        Public Works Salt Facility of
     Meriden, CT                        New Jersey DOT, Cherry Hill Yard           Roanoke PW, Roanoke, VA
    Connecticut DOT, District II, New    #411 Salt Storage Facility,              South Whitehall Township,
     Preston Satellite Salt Storage      Cherry Hill, NJ                           Allentown, PA
     Facility, New Preston, CT          New Jersey DOT, Cumberland                City of Springdale, Springdale, OH
    Connecticut DOT, Old Saybrook         County Complex, Bridgeton, NJ           City of West Des Moines, IA
     Facility, Old Saybrook, CT         New Jersey DOT, Cumberland                Wright County, Buffalo, MN
    Connecticut DOT, Route 71A Salt      Yard - #426, Maurice River, NJ           Town of Yorktown, NY
     Shed, Meriden, CT                  New Jersey DOT, Deepwater Yard            City of Zion Public Works, Zion, IL
                                         #425 Salt Storage, Facility,
                                         Deepwater, NJ

4                                                                             SALT & Highway Deicing / Winter 2006
  in Storage
  Village of Algonquin,
   Algonquin, IL

  Ashland County Salt Storage
   Building , Ashland, OH

  City of Bloomington,
   Bloomington, MN

  CT DOT, East Hampton Salt
   Storage Facility,
   East Hampton, CT

  CT DOT, Pomfret Salt Storage
   Facility, Pomfret, CT

  Franklin County West Mainte-
  nance Facility, Columbus, OH

  Hamilton Township,
   Hamilton, NJ

  City of Mississauga
  Mississauga, ON

  PennDOT Pen Argyl Stockpile 07,
   Easton, PA

  Township of Randolph,
   Randolph, NJ

SALT & Highway Deicing / Winter 2006   5
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