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Cliff Notes on Baltimore City’s Snow Clearing Plan

P. Kenneth Burns

Now, here’s an attempt to answer the question many Baltimore City residents must have been asking at some point after the snow started falling early Tuesday morning:  When will the plow clear my street?

That’s kind of hard to pin down exactly. But Adrienne Barnes, a spokeswoman for the City Department of Transportation, says the department’s goal is to have every city street cleared within eight hours after the last flake falls. So, you can figure some time around 11 p.m. Tuesday at the latest.

Barnes said the department divides the city into four sections and begins treating streets with salt once the first flake falls. “[In house crews] treat primaries while contractors address secondary roadways.”

For example, Charles Street, where WYPR is located, is a primary street and gets attention from city crews.  Forest Hill Avenue in Morrell Park, on the other hand, is a secondary. Contractors work there.

State crews treat highways with a liquid solution ahead of predicted snow fall.

Barnes says you can’t do that with salt “because dry salt bounces into the gutters.”

The snowfall Tuesday was the first in Baltimore since March 17, 2014, according to the National Weather Service office in Sterling, Va.

Kathy Dominick, another transportation spokeswoman, says residents can contact the city’s One Call Center, 311, to report icy conditions.