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Winter Weather Policies and Procedures

**In the event of an emergency, dial 911. To contact City Hall directly, dial 540-462-3700.**

What You Can Do to be Informed and Prepared:

  • Subscribe to Alert Rockbridge to be informed via email, phone call or text on weather advisory news and traffic changes, city emergencies and more.
  • Monitor updates from National Weather Service for forecasts in the area and winter weather safety.
  • Check the City’s web page and social media pages for updates in the case of road closings and pertinent weather-related information.
  • If you must leave your house (stay home if you can!), remove packed snow off of your car before driving a) for your own visibility and safety, but also b) so lumps of snow don’t fly off onto other drivers’ windshields, creating a hazard.

When the City declares a Winter Storm Emergency: 

If winter weather forecasts indicate major snow conditions, the City Manager may declare a Winter Storm Emergency. This may require removal of vehicles from downtown streets, as well as changes in trash and recycling collection schedules. In this event, stay tuned to the City website and other communication outlets for updates.

Roadways and Sidewalks During and After Snow:

  1. Plowing: The Public Works Department will plow City streets for the duration of the winter weather period and continue for days thereafter until the City is sufficiently cleared.
  2. Sidewalk clearing: Public Works will clear sidewalks surrounding public spaces and City-owned buildings. Sidewalks to be cleared by Public Works can be seen here. Residents are required to clear their own sidewalks via City Code: § 356-15 Removal of snow from sidewalk or footway. [Added 1-3-1963] The tenant, owner or occupant or any person having the care of any building or lot bordering on any street, whether there is a paved sidewalk or not, shall have all snow removed from such sidewalk or footway within six hours after the snow shall have ceased falling, unless the snow shall have fallen during the night or on Sunday, in which case it shall be removed by 12:00 noon the day following. Failure to do so is unlawful and shall be punished as provided by Chapter 1, § 1-6 of this Code.
  3. Removal: In the event of exceeding amounts of snowfall, Public Works may remove piles of snow from the City.

Clearing Your Driveway

As plowing is a difficult operation to perform, residents are asked to park in their driveways when snow is anticipated rather than on the street, where possible. This will allow operations to be performed in a more safe and time-effective manner. Please keep in mind that it is nearly impossible to keep snow from being deposited at your driveway entrance during plowing, as the plow cannot be lifted or stopped at each driveway. Residents are asked to try to wait until plow equipment has come through before clearing driveways.

When shoveling or plowing snow from your driveway, please do not push snow into the street. This only slows the plowing operation, and if pushed snow left in the street freezes, it can create a hazardous situation. While shoveling, City safety officials ask that residents not obstruct fire hydrants with snow pile. Additionally, residents can increase Fire Department efficiency and safety by shoveling a 3-foot circumference around any fire hydrant.

Why Some Roads are Cleared Before Others

As snow begins to accumulate, the City of Lexington concentrates on certain roads, which referred to as the Main Drag and includes Main Street, Nelson Street, Washington Street and others. These roads are focused on first because of the significance (i.e. hospital route). As the snow keeps falling, the City's first priority is to keep the main roads open and passable. As soon as all major streets within the city are clear, equipment is immediately moved into residential areas.

The City of Lexington requests that residents please be patient during snow operations. Snow removal is a difficult and time-consuming task. Please try to limit road travel during and immediately following a snowfall unless absolutely necessary. The less traffic on the roads during snow clearing operations, the more effective the job can be performed.

Stay warm out there!

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