Monday, December 07, 2015

Are You Prepared For Winter?

Don't be caught off guard. Prepare for this year's winter weather by following Mayor Walsh's Boston Winter Weather Guide 2015-2015 with important information on snow alerts and emergencies, parking, trash pick-ups, and cleared sidewalks and streets.

Dear Residents,

As we prepare for another winter, we need
your help and cooperation to ensure that we are ready for the challenges that snow, ice and freezing temperatures create on our roadways and in our neighborhoods. I am grateful for your patience during last year’s historic amount of snow, and I am proud that this year we are even better prepared for any
challenges the winter ahead might bring our way. We are adding to our salting and plowing operations two mega snow blowers which can clear more than 2,000 tons of snow per hour from our main arteries during the worst conditions, and we have a stronger plan to ensure the safety of all of our residents, no matter what the weather.

Please use these tips to do your part to help prepare, and do not hesitate to use our new and improved 311 system for any questions, concerns or feedback. Be safe, smart, and let’s hope Mother Nature is kind to us this year.
                                           Mayor Walsh

Get news about snow emergencies, parking bans, school closings or cancellations:
Visit and follow @CityofBostonRegister for alerts at

Call 311 or 617.635.4500 for non-emergency city services

For Emergencies (Police, Fire, EMS) call 911

ABCD Fuel Assistance: 617-357-6012
Boston Water & Sewer: 617-989-7000
Consumer Complaints: 617-635-3834
DCR: 617-626-4973
Elderly Commission: 617-635-4366
Inspectional Services: 617-635-1010
MBTA: 617-222-3200
MassDOT: 857-368-6111
National Grid Gas: 800-322-3223
NSTAR Electric & Gas: 800-592-2000
Tow Lot: 617-635-3900
Verizon: 800-837-4966

Remove snow, slush and ice from sidewalks and curb ramps abutting your property. The City requires sidewalks be cleared within three hours of snowfall ending or three hours after sunrise if snow falls overnight. Remove ice to bare pavement or make as level as possible. Sidewalks must be cleared to create at least a 42 inch wide path for wheelchairs and strollers.

Violators will be fined. Each day that a violation exists is considered a separate and distinct violation.

Fines for uncleared sidewalks:

  • Commercial Property $200
  • Residential Property 16+ Units $100
  • Residential Property $50

Renters: Heating problems? First alert your landlord. If your landlord is unresponsive, call 311 to report and Inspectional Services Division will investigate.
Units must be heated to: 68 degrees during the day and 64 degrees during the night. 

Need help paying for heat? Apply for help through the state’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program. Visit or call 617-357-6012.
Never use your oven for heat. Space heaters can cause fires, so don’t place them near curtains or things that can catch fire. Remember to turn them off before going to bed. Clear exhaust vents to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning, and check for working carbon monoxide and smoke detectors.

Trash and recycling collection is canceled only during the most extreme storms. Crews may work later than usual, so leave items out unless collection is canceled. If it’s canceled, please hold onto your trash and recycling until your next scheduled pickup.

Get updated about changes in collection schedules by visiting, 
downloading the TrashDay app, or calling 311.

Crews have a difficult time reaching trash barrels and recycling carts behind snow banks. Clear an area at the curb, or place containers next to or in front of snow banks.

We will collect Christmas trees for composting from January 4 -15. Don’t put them in plastic bags and make sure to take off decorations. Place curbside by 7 AM on your recycling day.

Help us keep streets open to plows and emergency vehicles by parking at least 20 feet away from intersections and no further than 1 foot from the curb. Don’t block sidewalks, fire hydrants, ramps, driveways or the street with your vehicle.

During a snow emergency, discount parking is available in garages with a valid resident parking sticker. Discounted parking starts two hours prior to the start of the snow emergency and ends two hours after.

Check Snow in Boston for lists of where not to park during a snow emergency and discount garages in your neighborhood.

  • Parking meters remain in effect during snow emergencies.
  • Make your resident parking sticker visible within 24 hours after the end of a storm.
  • You’ll be ticketed and towed if you park on posted snow emergency arteries during
  • a declared emergency.
  • Clear all snow at least one foot around car muffler before starting car. 
  • Please clear fire hydrants.
  • Remove space savers 48 hours.

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