Sidewalk snow removal
Snow removal rules
- Remove snow from sidewalk within six hours after snowfall stops.
- Clear a path at least 36 inches wide on your sidewalk.
- Be sure to include curb cuts when you shovel.
- Do not shovel or sweep the snow into the street.
Penalty for uncleared sidewalk
- Minimum of $50, but up to $300 for each violation
View more details in the Philadelphia Code 10-720.
Snow emergency routes
What’s a snow emergency route?
There are 110 miles of snow emergency routes in Philadelphia. These routes must be clear when there’s a winter storm, so that snow plows can pass through.
Snow emergency routes are marked with large red signs reading “Snow Emergency Route” in white letters.
Snow emergency routes map
Check out the route map or view a list of snow emergency routes.
What happens during a snow emergency?
The City declares a snow emergency when winter storms are expected to create dangerous conditions for vehicles or pedestrians.
Once the City declares a snow emergency, owners of vehicles and dumpsters parked along snow emergency routes must move them to alternate parking spaces until the emergency has been declared over.
- If you do not move your vehicle or dumpster, you may be ticketed and your vehicle or dumpster may be towed.
- Vehicles that cannot move under their own power are not exempt.
Motorists may drive on snow emergency routes as long as their vehicles are equipped to handle adverse conditions. Vehicles that stall or become stuck along snow emergency routes may be towed or fined.
What to do if your car has been towed?
If your vehicle has been towed from a snow emergency route:
- Call (215) 686-SNOW.
- Do not call 911.
- Be prepared to provide information to identify your vehicle.
- Learn more about snow emergencies in the Philadelphia Code (12-2500).
Salting and plowing operations
The Department of Streets’s Highway Division maintains 2,525 miles of City roads and 50 State roads in Philadelphia. Salting and plowing operations during a winter weather event depend upon the amount of snow that sticks.
|Snow amount||Treatment||Map of treatment areas|
|Less than 1 inch||Salt bridges and primary roadways (major arterial roads and emergency snow routes)|
||Level 2 service map|
||Level 3 service map|
|5 or more inches||
||Level 4 service map|
Visit StreetSmartPHL and click on PlowPHL to view the status of salting and plowing operations during a winter weather event.
Contact Philly311 for salting and plowing requests.