Snow Plow Status
Current Status is YELLOW
IMPORTANT NOTICE TO RESIDENTS: The Town Highway crew is operating at a significantly reduced capacity due to COVID-19 staffing levels. The objective is to try to keep roads open for travel, even if the full road width cannot be plowed. The crew does not have the capability at this time to open up the road close to mailboxes and driveways and some walkways may not be plowed that are identified to be plowed. We ask that residents and businesses pitch in and assist both their neighbors and the Town to clear these areas until such time as more of the Town workforce is available.
Public Works winter operations are at great risk of being severely interrupted due to the pandemic. Both the Village and the Town have limited staffs with very few personnel available for back-up in the event that employees are sick and cannot work. The Town and Village remain diligent in ensuring highway crews are safe and healthy during the pandemic which means employees will not be allowed to work if they are sick. Winter storms may occur that cannot be fully covered in a timely fashion by plow or sidewalk crews. Delays will occur and the expected current service levels will be negatively impacted.
The Town and Village adopted an alert system for this upcoming season to inform residents what service level they can expect depending on available resources and winter storm severity. There are three alert levels: green, yellow, and red. Alert levels will be updated daily and throughout the course of a major storm.
Public Works crews can maintain service levels historically provided and as outlined in the Winter Operations Plan. One or two employees may be out due to short term illness or a truck may be inoperative but generally service levels can be maintained. If a major snow or ice event occurs, there will be delays but those delays will be consistent with past experience.
If only 75% of the CDL licensed crew is available, operations may be delayed 4 to 8 hours due to the unavailability of crews or the severity and duration of the storm event or a combination of both. Primary routes and hill sections will be covered. Coverage on flat secondary roads and sidewalks may be delayed until equipment and personnel are available. Some vehicles may be diverted from normal routes to assist emergency responders. This designation may impact school openings or closings and bus pick-ups, depending upon the severity of the storm and the timing.
If 50% of the CDL licensed crew or less is available to provide winter services, road clearing operations will be severely impacted with possible delays from 12 to 24 hours; sidewalks may not get started until the storm event is over. This alert level will likely impact school openings or closings and bus pick-ups, depending upon the severity of the storm and the timing.
If you are interested in receiving notifications when the plow status changes, please sign up to receive notifications via email here.
IMPORTANT NOTE: The alert system does not replace other emergency alert systems/declarations or school decisions regarding opening or closure. The only relevance is to expected road and sidewalk conditions and delays in providing road and sidewalk clearing operations over the period of a winter storm and immediately after the storm. School closures will be determined by the Essex-Westford School District and local businesses.
The Town and Village appreciate the cooperation and understanding of residents while we navigate this winter season. For any questions or additional information, the joint Town and Village Winter Operations Plan can be viewed here or contact the Town Public Works Department at 878-1344 or Village Public Works Department at 878-6944.