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Public Works preparing for rain; how you can help

The Streets and Parks crews would like to thank everyone for their continued patience during this snowy, snowy winter. We have received more than 50 inches of snow, the bulk of which fell in during a record-breaking February.

The next few days have rain in the forecast. Crews from the Public Works Department are working to clear snow and ice from storm drains (also known as a catch basin) along curbs to allow for proper drainage as snow melts and rain falls.

Not all storm drains will need to be cleared
Even though the catch basin is covered by snow, the water may still be flowing. If you notice a storm drain is covered and water is pooling on the street, try to locate the storm drain and begin chipping away at ice or snow covering the drain. Call Public Works at 651-714-3720 to let them know if you are in need of assistance. Not all storm drains will be addressed the same day as requested as there are more than 7,000 in the city, but this will help make it easier for the crew to clear the drain, expediting the process.

How to locate a snow-covered storm drain
storm drain findingThe best way to locate a storm drain that is covered in snow is to type your address into the Google Street Viewer. You will see a summertime view of your street, and will be able to locate the catch basins
 located along the curb. Use trees, signs or other objects as reference points to locate the drain. 

If there is standing water on the street, you also can locate a storm drain by finding the area where the most water is pooling. The stormwater system is designed to bring the water toward the catch basin. If water isn’t pooling, it may be running under the snow and into the catch basin. If this is happening, you shouldn't need to clear the snow at this time.

The city appreciates the volunteer spirit of the community, from Hydrant Heroes to the new "Storm Drain Stewards!" If you are attempting to break up the snow and ice from a nearby drain, please use caution and be mindful of traffic.