View City of Kansas City, Mo., snow and ice policy
, City emergency snow routes
. What is the City’s budget for snow removal this year?
The City has budgeted $2.75 million for snow removal this fiscal year.
What happens if all the money is spent before the snow season ends?
Funds are available from the City’s contingency fund for snow removal.
How many vehicles does the City have on the streets during a winter storm?
When fully staffed, the Public Works, Parks and Recreation and Water Services departments have approximately 200 vehicles on City streets. Of these, about 65 are pickup trucks assigned to residential routes.
Approximately how many miles of streets are plowed?
The City has approximately 6,400 lane miles of pavement surface. 2,400 lane miles are on the primary and arterial streets that connect neighborhoods and accommodate cross-town traffic. Primary and arterial streets are plowed from curb-to-curb and receive heavier salting than residential streets.
In residential areas, there are approximately 4,000 lane miles of streets. The crews assigned to residential snow plows strive to provide a passable lane in residential areas. A passable lane may have snow-pack, but is still considered passable. When conditions allow, the passable lane is widened. Therefore, at the start of a winter weather event, a single 2,000 mile centerline is plowed on residential streets. As widening is possible, crews strive to clear as much of the 4,000 lane miles as is reasonably possible. In residential areas, plows apply salt and sand to hills, curves, intersections and known slick spots.
How can I find out where streets have been cleared?
The Public Works Department tracks its vehicles through a GPS system. The locations of those vehicles are posted in real time on a public website.
How does the department prepare for a forecast winter storm?
Forecasts are reviewed from three different sources and if a storm is evident, anti-icing will begin on designated streets before the storm hits if the weather is conducive (20 degrees or above and no rain). The crews are split into two 12-hour shifts to work the full length of the storm and if not already at work, are asked to report two hours before impending winter weather so they can be ready to begin their routes when the storm hits. The last shift working before the storm is responsible for mounting all plows and spreaders in preparation for the next shift.
How long does it take to clear the streets?
It takes about four hours to salt and eight hours to plow the arterial street system for one cycle. It takes 12 hours to plow the residential street system for one cycle.
What happens after a winter storm?
- Emergency repairs to pavement and/or bridges damaged by snow/ice removal are made.
- Response to slick calls from residents begins.
- The equipment is prepared for the next storm.
- Materials are replenished as needed to maintain needed supply levels.
- Bridge decks are cleaned of chemicals.
Who plows the highways?
The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) plows highways. Many streets in Kansas City are actually part of the highway system and plowing for them is MoDOT's responsibility. A few of these streets are Bannister Road, Noland Road, Vivion Road, Antioch Road and part of Independence Avenue. The telephone number for MoDOT is 816-622-6500.
What should people driving during a snowstorm do?
If you don’t have to drive, don't! However, if you must drive in severe winter weather, be prepared for the worst. Leave earlier so you can drive at a safe speed. Allow extra distance between your car and the one ahead of you in case something unexpected happens. Do not assume because you are exercising caution that other drivers are driving sensibly. Have some protective supplies (flashlight, blanket, jumper cables) in your car in case of a breakdown or an accident. Try to limit your driving in winter storms if at all possible; the fewer cars there are on the roads, the easier it is for snow removal to be done successfully.
Important telephone numbers:
- 311 Call Center, 816-513-1313 or 311
- Missouri Department of Transportation, 816-622-6500