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Snow Removal FAQ

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Frequently Asked Questions about Snow and Ice Removal

How do I find out if my street is part of the snow plan? You will find a map on our website that allows you to type in the address of your home or business. You can then click on the map to find city snow routes in your neighborhood.

What roads are part of the Louisville Metro snow plan? Snow coordinators in Metro Government review the snow and ice removal plan each year. Some routes are added and others are subtracted, but the goal remains the same – to make sure our city keeps moving and our residents can get to school, work or the hospital. The city clears about one-third of the 3,000 miles of roads in this community, which includes major thoroughfares, school routes, hospital routes and arteries that feed major employers. Another third is cleared by the state, small cities and private contractors, and the remaining third is neighborhood streets that are not cleared. As part of a continuing agreement with the state, city crews maintain most state roads and highways in Louisville. While the state will continue to clear all interstates and ramps, the Louisville Snow Team is responsible for roads like Breckinridge Lane, Beulah Church Road, Shelbyville Road and Dixie Highway.

What should I do if my street is not part of the snow plan? If your street is not part of the snow plan, check with your neighbors or homeowner’s association to see if a private contractor may be an option for your block.

Does any large city clear all neighborhood streets? Neighborhood streets are not part of the Louisville Metro Government snow and ice removal plan. Most major cities across the country do not clear all neighborhood streets because of the expense and the demand on resources and manpower. Neighborhood streets are only cleared in the event that the mayor declares a snow emergency.  

Who’s in charge of snow removal? Louisville Metro's snow-fighting team is comprised of employees from Public Works, Solid Waste Management  Metro Parks and Codes and Regulations.

Why don’t snow removal crews lift their plows when they encounter driveways?  The Snow Team is working to be as efficient as possible, with more than 1,300 miles of roads to treat and clear. If our drivers lifted their plows at every driveway, it would increase the time it takes to move through the designated snow routes, greatly reducing the miles of roadway our crews can cover during a snow or ice event.

What are crews doing when they’re driving in the snow without their plows lowered? Many of our brine distributors and salt trucks are also equipped with plows. So, if you see our trucks in your neighborhood and the plow are not lowered, our crews are likely treating roads with salt or brine. Conditions on roadways can sometimes deteriorate if a snow-covered road is plowed – the pavement may become coated with a compacted layer of ice, making roads more slick.

Who is responsible for clearing parking lots? City crews are responsible for clearing government-owned parking lots. Local business owners will require the services of a private contractor to clear their parking lots. The city asks that private contractors refrain from covering fire hydrants and depositing plowed snow in the streets.

Who is responsible for clearing sidewalks? Louisville Metro Ordinance 97.113 requires business owners to remove snow from sidewalks surrounding their property within 24 hours of a storm. The city does not clear sidewalks. The ordinance states:


     (A)     It shall be the duty of all persons and corporations owning or occupying property abutting a public street in Louisville Metro to remove within 24 hours thereafter such snow as may fall on the sidewalks in front of their property.  Where the property is unimproved or unoccupied this duty shall devolve on the owner or the agent for the property.  Where property is occupied by others than owners thereof, this duty shall devolve on the owner or the tenants and either may be proceeded against for the violation.

     (B)     Snow when removed from the sidewalk shall be placed either on private property or in the public driveway at a distance not less than 12 inches from the curbing of the sidewalk. However, in no event shall the snow be so placed as to obstruct the free passage of water in the gutter or in the direction of any sewer or catch basin.

To learn more, visit American Legal and search for "Chapter 97"