Share the Roadways With Our Street Department This Winter

MARSHFIELD, WI (OnFocus) – Our first snowfall of the year is here and the Marshfield Street Division has some tips to keep you and the snow plows safe this year.

The first and easiest way to help plows and snow removal employees during winter is to abide by seasonal street laws.

Beginning in November, residents of Marshfield are not allowed to park overnight on the streets. This is to help with having a minimal amount of obstacles to face when clearing snow. During snow emergencies, it is illegal to park on the streets at all.

Another thing residents can do according to Assistant Street Division Superintendent Cody Shanks is keep the alley ways clear.

Alleys are commonly forgot roadways and in cities like Wausau, residents are responsible for their own alley snow removal. In Marshfield, they are considered a roadway and therefore, the street division takes care of them. Keeping cars, garbage bins and other items out of the alleys will help with snow removal this winter.

Residents are also encouraged to blow snow into their own yards as opposed to the street. It creates a back-and-forth effect as the excess snow that is collected is a lot of times sent back into the driveway area incidentally.

Mailboxes are broken or damaged by plows every year. If anyone’s mailbox is directly hit by a plow, the city will come and reinstall it for free. However, if the mailbox is knocked over by snow as a result of the plow going past, that is the owner’s responsibility.

Hawley said, one of the best things you can do to help keep snowplows safe while on the roads is taking extra time for your commutes.

“Make sure you give the plows enough room,” Hawley said. “Stay 200 feet back, at least. Plan accordingly. If you go to bed at night and whatever news station you watch is calling for 3-4 inches of snow overnight, take a little extra time to get to work the next morning.”

Marshfield has 16 snow removal routes and Hawley and Assistant Street Division Superintendent Tim Rasmussen said they have higher-priority roads that they like to get and keep clear before less-traveled roads.

“If we go into full-plow operation, we have our drivers broken up into sections,” Hawley said. “Each plow truck driver knows where to hit first.”

“They have a good mixture of what was called priority roads, roads traveled with the highest traffic volume and a mixture of residential roads that aren’t nearly as traveled,” Rasmussen said. “So they have a good mixture in each section where they can hit the main roads first and then follow into the subdivisions and lower-volume roads.”

Equipment operators have early mornings and late nights in heavy snowfall situations so the more patient you can be with them, the better. When not plowing snow, street division employees are still working on other projects throughout the winter.

Marshfield Street Division Superintendent Kris Hawley said as fall wraps up and winter approaches, the street department shifts gears from road construction projects to smaller maintenance projects on roads and vehicles.

The street division will be working on patching potholes throughout the winter as well as helping the forestry department get rid of the Emerald Ash Borer in Brehm Park.

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Neal Hogden
Author: Neal Hogden