Snow & Ice Removal
The primary goal of Public Services is to provide the traveling public with the safest driving surface possible in an efficient and economical way with resources available to the Town of Windsor during snowstorms.
The town strives to remove snow and ice from our roadways as quickly and efficiently as possible while keeping roads open and essential traffic moving. This does not mean bare and dry pavement should be expected after each snowstorm. The goal of snow and ice operations is to return road surfaces to safe winter driving conditions as soon as possible.
It must be recognized that each snowstorm has its own character with variable conditions, such as air and pavement temperatures, wind speeds and directions, precipitation rates and types, timing, duration, and traffic activity. This plan must remain flexible and take into consideration these variables.
The town’s main focus is to clear all major arterial streets for emergency responders, schools, bus routes and motorists, providing a basic network of connected main streets. Windsor is made up of 263.04 center-lane miles of streets. However, that number can triple or quadruple when factoring in lanes. For example, Main Street from 7th Street to 15th Street is approximately one mile; however it is four lane miles due to the four lanes that exist on Main Street, not including turn lanes.
View snow plow route map (PDF)
The Town uses Ice Buster, a granular rock salt product, pre-wetted with Apex Meltdown to reduce corrosion while increasing de-icing performance on all the Town’s roadways. Ice Buster is a complex chloride containing primarily Sodium Chloride (NaCI), Magnesium Chloride (MgCI-2), and Calcium Chloride (CaCI-2). Ice Buster works down to 15 degrees; once below that temperature it becomes difficult to melt snow and ice. Ice Buster accelerates ice melt by absorbing 50% more of the sun’s radiant energy than white de-icing products. This salt comes from a salt mine in Kansas and is grey in color. The color grey signals to motorists that roads have been treated. This product requires fewer applications resulting in reduced amounts of chloride introduced into the environment. Studies indicate that applying de-icing materials reduces accidents by 88% and pays for itself in a half hour in terms of avoiding vehicle crashes. The Town does not use sand. Ice Buster delivers enhanced traction and eliminating the need for sand. By doing this, reduces sediment along roadways, in storm drainages, and in rivers. Sand can have detrimental effects to air quality and sweeping cost for the cleanup.
Apex Meltdown is a corrosion inhibitor, derived from organic polymers and blended with a 30 percent Magnesium Chloride solution. Apex Meltdown (Magnesium Chloride solution) works down to -10 F degrees; The Town uses Prewetting Salt Operations, which is a process of coating, or treating,Ice Buster (granular rock salt) with a liquid Apex Meltdown (Magnesium Chloride solution) as it comes out of the V-box spreader. Generally done in the range of 5 to 10 gallons of liquid per ton of material. Pre-wetted Ice Buster (granular rock salt) will stick to the pavement and reduces bounce and scatter, while increasing the de-icing performance at which the salt begins the melting process. Crews are trained on sensible salting techniques, and all snow plow trucks are calibrated to spread only the amount of de-icing salt required to de-ice the roadways.
The Town's Snow & Ice Control Plan strategies and products have changed over the years due to changes in industry practices, availability of products, and changing markets. We work to stay up on the trends in snow and ice control and try new products as they become available in order to use the best products for the safety of our community. The Town also places a high value on environmental protection and cost considerations.
What Are Priorities? What is Plowed / De-iced and When?The following information shows the town's priorities for plowing and applying de-icing material.
*Note: These are guidelines only and other factors may necessitate actions.
Priority I is categorized as a mild snow event. All snowstorms start as a Priority I snow event, but they may escalate based on snow acumination and weather conditions.
Priority I plowing includes arterials and collector streets, which are plowed and treated with de-icing materials until the storm subsides. Hills, roundabouts and major intersections are treated with de-icing materials. Critical facilities such as Police and Fire Departments, as well as the Downtown Business District are plowed and treated with de-icing materials.
Arterials are typically multi-lane high-volume streets that connect major sections of the Town. Collectors streets connect small local streets to larger arterial streets. They are often utilized to access schools, the Community Recreation Center and other local establishments.
A Priority II snow event is categorized as moderate. During Priority II snow and ice operations, all Priority I areas are addressed plus all residential through streets and paved alleys.
Priority III is categorized as a major snow event. During Priority III snow and ice operations, all Priority I and II areas are addressed plus cul-de-sacs and dead-end streets are plowed after evaluation, as town resources allow.
Downtown Snow RemovalThe downtown area consists of Main Street (HWY 392) from 7th Street to 3rd Street and 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th Street between Walnut Street and Ash Street. Snow removal crews will plow and ice de-ice curb to curb in the downtown area at least once during a snow event. Businesses in this area are encouraged to shovel snow from their sidewalks onto the street prior to the town’s snow removal crews arriving. Snow removal crews will remove snow in a timely manner, as resources allow.
In 2019 Governor Jared Polis signed House Bill 19-1265 into a law making it a Class A traffic offense for a driver to pass a plow operating in tandem formation. Tandem formation is when two or more plows are diagonally staggered across each lane and are operating together. Help keep yourself and others safe by staying 3-4 car lengths back from a plow.
- When will the town plow my street?
- What snow and ice removal items are residents responsible for?
- When will the town start snow and ice control operations?
- Why do the plows cover over the areas I just shoveled, and am I responsible for those areas?
- Who is responsible for clearing and maintaining sidewalks during a snow event?
- My neighbors never clear their sidewalks. What can I do?
- What can you do about ice build-up along curbs, gutters and sidewalks?
- Who is responsible for clearing and maintaining trails during a snow event?
- Why are only portions of the street plowed on residential streets?
- I saw a Town snow plow driving around during the storm with its blade up. Why wasn’t it plowing?
- How many miles of streets are plowed in the Town of Windsor?
- How many pieces of equipment are used in the snow plowing effort?
- What does the town put on the streets to melt ice and snow?
- Why doesn't the town plow to the center of the street?
- Who do I call to report problems with snow removal?