The snow emergency has been lifted as of 6 p.m. on February 18, 2021. The Streets Department will continue salting and plowing until roads are made passable for safe traveling. Parking is now permitted again along snow emergency routes.

With another storm approaching, Managing Director Tumar Alexander announced that a Snow Emergency will be declared for the City of Philadelphia beginning at 6 a.m., Thursday, February 18.

The forecast is calling for a winter storm beginning tomorrow, Thursday, February 18 through Friday, February 19. The current forecast is for significant snow with a total of 4 – 6 inches of accumulations expected across the city. Heavy, wet snow is expected.

Crews will continue snow operations until all conditions are safe for travel; however, this storm is expected to bring heavy snow and high winds. Residents should be mindful of fallen tree limbs and possible power and signal outages. Our goal is to make roads passable and return the city back to normal operations as quickly as possible.

Reminders for residents

  • Move your vehicle before 6 a.m. on February 18 if it is parked on a Snow Emergency route.
  • Do not shovel or plow snow into the street. This practice is illegal, unsafe and hinders snow operations.
  • Clear a sidewalk path at least 36 inches wide within six hours of the end of the storm.
  • Clear snow from neighborhood sewer drains to allow melting snow to drain.
  • Motorists should allow extra time, exercise patience and maintain safe driving distances.

Snow Emergency routes and vehicles

If your car is moved from a snow emergency route, call 215-686-SNOW (7669), and press option 4, to find it. Do NOT call 911.

Sanitation and Recycling Collections

Collections will resume Friday, February 19. Residents should expect delays as crews navigate through the snow and ice:

  • Wednesday’s collections, which were scheduled for Thursday this week due to the Presidents Day holiday, are postponed until Friday.  
  • Thursday’s collections are postponed until Saturday.
  • Residents whose normal trash day is Friday should hold their materials until Friday, February 26.

Residents may set materials at their normal pickup location. Residents with rear driveway collections should expect delays as some rear driveways can be inaccessible when there is significant hard-packed snow and ice. Crews will continue to assess inaccessible driveways and attempt to pick up materials when sanitation trucks can pass through safely.  

Sanitation Convenience Centers operations will resume on Friday, February 19 with normal hours of 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. The centers are open Monday through Saturday. Visit for locations.

Plowing and salting updates

The Streets Department launched PlowPHL, an interactive map that allows residents to track and monitor the status of the City’s plowing and salting operations. PlowPHL is the fourth and final web mapping tool on the StreetSmartPHL platform.

City buildings

The City of Philadelphia government offices will be open to the public tomorrow, Friday, February 19.

Homeless outreach 

The Office of Homeless Services issued a Code Blue on Wednesday, February 10 at 3 p.m., and it will remain in effect until further notice. Throughout the Code Blue, Philadelphia’s homeless outreach teams will patrol the streets in greater numbers, urging individuals experiencing homelessness to come indoors and avoid prolonged exposure to the elements amid dangerously cold temperatures. People do not need ID to enter shelters, and they can remain indoors throughout the duration of the Code Blue.

If you are concerned about someone who is homeless, please call Homeless Outreach at 215-232-1984 at any time. Outreach is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. First responders can also transport people to shelter for their own safety. Review the Safer Shelter Initiative to learn how City-funded, privately operated shelters keep residents and staff safe.


SEPTA will post real-time travel updates at and @SEPTA on Twitter.

Pet Safety Awareness

Residents should contact the ACCT Philly hotline (267-385-3800 ext. 1) if they observe a dog outside during extreme cold (aside from bathroom breaks and short walks). It is against City ordinance to leave dogs outside in extreme cold without proper shelter, and owners can be fined up to $500.

Food sites

Sites will be open on Friday, February 19. Visit to view specific site schedules.

Access Centers

Access Centers will resume normal schedule on Friday, February 19.

School District of Philadelphia

Virtual instruction will resume on a normal schedule and all offices and buildings will reopen starting tomorrow, Friday, February 19. 

Archdiocese of Philadelphia

Parish and regional elementary schools in the City of Philadelphia will conduct virtual instruction tomorrow, Friday, February 19. Parochial elementary schools in the suburban counties normally follow the decision of their corresponding local public school district and submit closure status independently.

Philadelphia Parking Authority

PPA will apply normal rates at all PPA-operated Center City garages beginning at 9 a.m. Friday, February 19. In order to be eligible for the $5 snow emergency rate, vehicles must enter by tonight at 7 p.m. and exit the facility by 9 a.m. Friday, February 19.

NOTE: To receive the discounted $5 rate, customers must bring their ticket and pay at the PPA Management Office in each garage.

Additionally, the PPA will resume enforcement of all parking regulations including, meters, kiosks, and residential parking time limits at 6:30 a.m. Friday, February 19. All parking safety regulations remain in effect.

Fallen Trees

The Department of Parks & Recreation reminds residents that if a tree falls during a storm and it’s blocking a road, or it has fallen on a house, car or other property, call 911. A crew of arborists from Philadelphia Parks & Recreation are on-call to respond to tree emergencies and they will come out to remove the hazard and any part of the tree that is an immediate risk to public safety. Other parts of the tree that don’t pose an immediate risk (such as tree trunks and stumps) will be removed at a later time so crews can focus on other safety hazards around the city during extreme weather events.

In the event that a tree has fallen on electrical wires, please call PECO’s emergency line: 1-800-841-4141.

For other non-emergency downed trees, residents can submit a request through Philly311.

PHL International Airport

Travelers and those picking up travelers are encouraged to check their flight status and road conditions before leaving for the airport on Thursday and Friday. Call your airline, get updates at 1-800-PHL-GATE (745-4283), or check the PHL International Airport website— The airport has brined onsite roadways, with snow removal and deicing operations planned for the duration of the event. 

Information for businesses

All property owners and/or tenants are responsible for clearing a 36 inch path on all sidewalks, including curb cuts, abutting the building or premises within six hours after the snow has ceased to fall—even if the establishment is temporarily closed due to snow or COVID-19 restrictions. A fine of $50 or more can be imposed in violation of this code.

Establishments with outdoor dining will need to take additional precautions in advance of the storm. All outdoor dining setups should be secured, removing as much of the setups as possible—including tables, chairs, heating equipment, temporary structures. As noted in the City’s winter guidelines for outdoor dining, the City is not liable for any damage from plowing or snow removal, even if structures are permitted. Materials should be cleared from the right of way as much as possible to avoid possible damage and blocking of dining setups. Restaurants with unpermitted structures are reminded that their establishment is liable for any injuries suffered due to damage from the structure during and after the storm.