Avoid Any Travel, But The City of Laramie Code Enforcement Division Reminds You To Clear Your Sidewalks As Soon As Possible After The Storm

LARAMIE – Considering the relatively mild winter experienced so far in southeast Wyoming, and with only a week before the much-anticipated arrival of spring, it makes perfect sense that the area’s first major winter storm is bearing down on Laramie.

Both Cheyenne Weatherman Don Day and the National Weather Service are warning that the approaching winter storm has the potential to be one of the worst storms to hit the region in quite a few years. Day said the first sign of snow should appear late tonight or early Wednesday morning, “but it won’t really reach its peak until sometime after sunrise Wednesday morning.” Day said the real problem will be not only the amount of snow, but winds could reach 60 mph, causing major drifting.

It’s Shovel Time

Since it is highly recommended to avoid any travel across southeast Wyoming, the City of Laramie Code Enforcement Division reminds you to keep your snow shovel handy and clear your sidewalks as soon as possible after the storm.

The Code Enforcement Division functions primarily to investigate and enforce property owners failing to clear their sidewalks of ice and snow following a snowfall, as well as to enforce ordinances pertaining to offensive growth, trash, junk, and junked vehicles located on private property.

Getty Images,Davis Turner

Removal of Snow, Ice & Debris from Sidewalks

Section 12.08.020 of the Laramie Municipal Code (updated as of February 25, 2018), states that “owners, occupiers, and property managers have the duty to keep the sidewalk adjacent to their properties clear of snow, ice . . .” and other debris.

If the owner fails to take appropriate action, the code enforcement inspector may take further measures to correct the problem including hiring a contractor to correct the problem, then charging the property owner the contractor’s fees plus $50.00.

The City’s Responsibility for Removal of Snow

City officials say that the intention of the snow removal policy is to be reasonable. Depending on the amount of snow received and the potential drifting problems, parking on any street “may be temporarily restricted if parked vehicles interfere with through traffic, plowing, snow hauling, or application of traction aid material,” like tire chains.

To assure the safe movement of traffic on the main arterial streets, Snow Emergency Routes are provided. A Snow Emergency may be declared by the City Manager whenever he determines that snow, sleet, freezing rain, blowing snow, or a forecast by the National Weather Service warrants the emergency.

If needed, the Laramie Snow and Ice Plan may be viewed at https://www.cityoflaramie.org/DocumentCenter/View/17046/Snow-and-Ice-Policy?bidId=

Announcements declaring a Snow Emergency will be announced at LaramieLive.com KOWB AM 1290 and 95.1 FM Y95 Country as soon as possible.

If you have any questions or wish to report a code violation, please call the Code Enforcement Inspector at 307-721-5285 or visit the Planning Office at 405 E Grand Avenue.

More on the Forecast . . .

The “potentially crippling” winter storm is creating a “very serious situation,” according to the National Weather Service in Cheyenne. In a statement, the Service said:

- Blizzard warnings and Winter Storm warnings have been issued for the Laramie/southeast Wyoming region;

- When: Starting late this evening/around midnight Wednesday morning through 6 p.m. Thursday afternoon;

- Main Impact Timing Window: 6 a.m. Wednesday morning to noon Thursday. The most significant impacts will occur across far southeast Wyoming and the entire Nebraska Panhandle, where blizzard warnings are already in effect;

- Sustained north winds of 35 to 45 mph with gusts up to 55-60 mph are expected and will result in “white-out” conditions - considerable blowing and drifting snow with very low visibility.

- Extremely high transportation impacts are expected. ALL TRAVEL ACROSS THIS REGION SHOULD BE AVOIDED.