Keeping sidewalks and roads clear

11 years ago

    As we enter the middle of our winter season, we would like to take this opportunity to inform and remind citizens of some issues related to snow removal. One of the goals for the Public Works Division this winter was to reduce the amount of time it takes to remove snow from our sidewalks.

    The city has an extensive amount of sidewalks, which total approximately 28 miles in length. Until this year we had one sidewalk tractor to remove snow from the sidewalks. The City Council approved the purchase of a second sidewalk tractor in the spring of 2012. With these two versatile machines being used to snowblow, snowplow, and sand/salt the city sidewalks, we are able to reduce clean-up time.

As a friendly reminder, the removal of snow and ice from some sidewalks is the responsibility of the abutting property owner or tenant. A list of those sidewalks that are the responsibility of the property owner or tenant is provided in Chapter 24 of the city ordinances. This can be viewed on the city website at

Although Public Works assists with the removal of snow from sidewalks after a storm, the ultimate responsibility for safe passage for pedestrians belongs to the property owner or tenant.

Please remember that it is against the law in the state of Maine to push snow from driveways and parking lots into the public way. The public way includes streets, sidewalks, roadways and ditches. If you clear your own snow or contract for snow removal services, please think about where your snow should be placed and show consideration to those who use the streets and sidewalks.

The Public Works crew has begun pushing back the snowbanks from the edge of the roads and streets in an effort to widen them in preparation for future snow storms. This also allows water from melting snow to properly drain into the ditches rather than onto the roadway. If the snow banks become frozen or are too large for the snowplow to move, the crew will mount the snowblower on the front end loader and blow the snow back. This process will continue throughout the winter months as needed.

The office has received a few telephone calls regarding built up ice and snow in culverts and ditches that could restrict water flow and create drainage problems in some areas during periods of warm weather. The removal of snow and ice accumulation in culverts and ditches is a service provided by the Public Works Division. If you experience these problems, please contact us at 764-2560. Our office hours are Monday through Friday 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.

    Sandra L. Fournier is the Administrative Assistant with Presque Isle’s Department of Public Services. She can be reached at 760-2712 or via e-mail at