A Crash Course on Snow Emergencies
Friday, January 15, 2021 10:25 AM


Here are the basics of what to do, what not to do, and how to find out when Saint Paul declares a snow emergency.

How do you know?
St. Paul generally declares a snow emergency when it snows 3 or more inches.

  • To get an automatic Snow Alert text message: Text “StPaul Snow” to 468311
  • To get an automatic Snow Alert by email or through your social media account: Sign up online.
  • Download Public Works' free Snow Emergency app for your smartphone, laptop, or tablet. The app notifies you when snow emergencies are declared, includes an interactive map showing when and where you need to move your vehicle, provides contact and towing information if you have questions, and has snow emergency information in eight languages.
  • If you are not signed up for an automated alert, call 651-266-7569 (PLOW) to find out if a snow emergency is in place or not. Check out the city’s Snow Emergency website. Or, listen to radio and TV.
  • If someone you know does not speak English, the city posts snow emergency information in other languages.

When St. Paul declares a snow emergency, this is what happens:

Night plowing
Snow emergencies begin at 9 p.m. Cars must be off all streets that are designated a “night plow route.” In most cases, this means parking is banned on both sides of arterial streets and on one side of most north-south residential streets. No parking is allowed on a "night plow route" until the street is plowed to the curb.

Day plowing
If your side of the street does not have snow emergency signs posted, that means your side of the street is a "day plow route." Day plowing typically begins about 8 a.m., after night plowing is finished. In most cases, during day-plowing operations, parking is banned on both sides of east-west residential streets and on the side of north-south residential streets that is not marked with “night plow route” signs. (During the day, you can park on the "night plow" side of the street.)

Again, no parking is allowed until streets have been plowed to the curb. And, remember, there are no signs designating day plow routes.

Vehicles will be ticketed and towed if they are not moved before plowing begins. If your car is towed, you can find it here. All cars in our neighborhood are towed to the impound lot at 1129 Cathlin St., south of the Fairgrounds. (Map)

Sidewalks must be cleared of snow and ice within 24 hours of the end of the snowfall. To report a sidewalk that is not clear and is a safety hazard, report the address to the city's Department of Safety and Inspections at 651-266-8989.

Homeowners who do not keep their sidewalks clear will be assessed for the cost of the city clearing the walk instead. (Download the PDF at top right for more details.)

More shoveling information is available online.

District 10 Como Community Council | 1224 Lexington Pkwy N, Saint Paul, MN 55103 | 651.644.3889 | district10 [at] district10comopark.org

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