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Winter Weather Preparedness
 SnowPath SnowPlowing   snowshoveler

Snow and ice storms produce an average accumulation of 16-24 inches annually in Rockville, and are typically spread over several events. Clearing city streets and sidewalks is a difficult process that takes time, hard work and good communication between residents, business owners and the City.

The City clears snow from 160 lane miles of roadways, 30 miles of publicly owned sidewalks, walkways and pathways, and 18 City-owned facilities and parks with parking lots.

For more information, call the Public Works Department at 240-314-8500.

Snow Removal Priorities
City crews treat and plow roads in the following priority order:

Primary roads that consist of major arterial roads, emergency routes, central business districts and primary residential roads near schools.

Secondary roads that consist of the remainder of neighborhood streets, alleyways and cul-de-sacs.

Snow Removal on Sidewalks
Sidewalks, driveways and entrances are the responsibility of the adjacent property owner, occupant, community association or business for snow removal. Snow and ice must be cleared from all paved sidewalks abutting your property within 24-72 hours of the end of the snowfall, depending on the snowfall totals (up to three inches = 24 hours; three to nine inches = 48 hours; 10 inches or more = 72 hours).

City crews coordinate road clearing and sidewalk work depending on the severity of the storm. Accessible curb ramps, sidewalks and pathways that abut publicly-owned property are cleared by crews from City departments.

Snow Emergency Ordinance
Conditions leading to a snow emergency are significant, deep snow. The City Manager may declare a snow emergency and will announce the status through local media, via the City's website and on Rockville 11.

The snow emergency ordinance states:

  • The City Manager may invoke snow emergency parking restrictions.
  • The City may remove or impound cars improperly parked.
  • Residents with driveways must park all vehicles there.
  • Residents without driveways, or who have more vehicles than will fit in the driveway, may park on the even-numbered side of the street only.
  • In courts or cul-de-sacs, where house numbers are not even on one side of the street and odd on the other, parking is allowed only on the left side of the streets as one enters the cul-de-sac or court.
  • No parking is allowed in the bulb of the cul-de-sac or court.
  • A $100 fine may be incurred for a snow emergency parking violation.

How Can You Help?
Once a snow emergency is declared by the City Manager, pay special attention to the City’s website, e-mail notices, Facebook and Twitter for announcements that a snow emergency plan is in effect.

Be prepared for winter weather by maintaining an adequate supply of shovels, salt or sand for your sidewalks and driveways. Clear ice, snow and leaves from around fire hydrants and storm drains, and avoid shoveling snow into the street when possible. Following these tips will help the City return to normal operations as quickly as possible.

Help a Neighbor in Need
There are also opportunities to volunteer when others who may not be able to clear snow need some help. Many seniors depend on the help of volunteers. If you can help, call the Senior Center and center officials will work to pair you with a senior in need of help in your neighborhood. Call 240-314-8810.

Rockville Inclement Weather Updates
When weather has the possibility of affecting a City program, meeting or facility, every attempt is made to maintain standard operations throughout the City. Decisions about whether to cancel morning programs or close facilities will be made by 6 a.m. with an update at 9 a.m. A decision on afternoon and evening programs will be made at 1:30 p.m. with an update at 4 p.m.

Those updates can be found on the home page of the City’s website; Rockville 11 (cable channel 11) or through updated phone lines.