Why your street might not get plowed by the City of Lincoln

LINCOLN, Neb. (KLKN) – The Lincoln Transportation and Utilities Department is preparing to start its 24-hour winter weather service for the coming storm.

A couple years ago, LTU would clear residential streets when there was 4 inches of snow or more.

Now, it makes the decision on a case-by-case basis.

Tim Byrne, the maintenance operations manager for LTU, said there’s a lot that goes into the department’s winter storm preparation.

“Right now, we’re planning to have our crews roll out at midnight,” Byrne said. “They will pre-treat all of the arterial streets with anti-ice brine, and then we will be ready for the snowfall as soon as it shows up.”

SEE ALSO: The latest weather forecast

LTU tailors its strategy to each storm.

When a storm has mixed precipitation, Byrne said it’s more difficult to come up with a plan ahead of time, which is why it’s asking everyone to do a few small things to make the process smoother.

“Keep an eye on the weather and plan your day around that. When we’re experiencing heavier periods of snowfall, try to think of how that might affect your daily commute as our crews are out there trying to clear the streets so that you can get there safer,” he said. “As far as around your house, if you have the ability to park your car off-street, that’s always a help to the crews, as they’re able to come through your neighborhood much more efficiently.”

Byrne said LTU focuses its efforts on streets that see the most traffic first.

He said the department is constantly communicating with weather experts to get the most accurate idea of what the weather will do.

LTU considers many factors when deciding whether to clear residential streets, like the type of snowfall, how much accumulation is on the streets, and the forecasted temperatures for the days after a storm.

“That winter mix for us means that it’s going to be slushy,” Byrne said. “So if you’re out there driving around, that’s where you might see some slicker conditions, just due to that slush on the roadway under your tires. When you’re walking on sidewalks, be aware of that.”

SEE ALSO: Lincoln Public Schools cancels class ahead of winter storm

Byrne said LTU is not expecting much ice accumulation since the temperatures are forecast to be warm enough to melt precipitation.

Local hardware stores say it seems like people around Lincoln are ready to do their part.

Alan Kulhanek, the general manager for Ace Hardware at 48th and Van Dorn Streets, said since there wasn’t much snow in the past couple winter seasons, people are coming in to buy materials.

“We’ve seen a lot of people preparing, getting shovels, ice melt, gloves, hats, anything they might need for the cooler weather,” he said.

SEE ALSO: List of closings, delays and cancellations

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