The Indianapolis Department of Public Works prepares year round to handle the onslaught of winter weather that will affect more than 6,900 lane miles under its jurisdiction. Each fall, the vehicles and equipment used for winter weather are put through maintenance checks and a comprehensive inspection. In addition, city employees are trained annually, participating in an extensive master plow training course to ensure the proper handling of vehicles and safe winter driving tactics.
The City of Indianapolis encompasses more than 4,100 additional lane miles of residential streets. While in previous years these have not been addressed, DPW has a plan in place to clear residential streets in a manner that provides the most mobility to the community. Of course, this coverage is based on available resources and equipment limitations of the street.
In the aftermath of a heavy snowfall, no city's streets can be perfect, but through a combination of diligent preparation, timely response and resident cooperation we can keep Indy moving this winter. Our plan is based on three key factors:
We've added some serious muscle to our team. Since 2008, Indy Snow Force has acquired 73 brand new trucks. That brings our fleet total up to 106 vehicles. We also boast 180 drivers (so we can run our trucks 24/7 if necessary) and a host of other equipment and supplies.
During winter months, we monitor weather conditions around the clock. Even before snow and ice hit, we'll be on the streets working to minimize the impact of winter storms.
We work according to a detailed plan. To effectively serve the largest number of people, we categorize roadways into three priorities and plow them accordingly.
Primary Snow Routes
These roads are plowed first because they link the city's police, fire and emergency services. Priority 1 roads are major snow routes and thoroughfares - including roads thousands of commuters and residents depend on every day, especially during rush hour.
Secondary Snow Routes
Roads in this category are highly traveled, but not as much as primary routes. As a general rule of thumb, these routes feed into Primary Snow Routes.
During heavy snowfall events of 6" or more, outside contractors are brought in to assist Indy Snow Force teams in residential areas. Since 2009, we've upgraded the number of available contractors by 80%. That means 300 pieces of equipment have been added to our arsenal.
We'll do the hard work. That's what we're here for. But we encourage you to do a few small things that can make a real difference. To see what you can do, click here.