Mountlake Terrace Public Works Department cannot eliminate all of the impacts of a snow or ice emergency, but their goal is to provide service to lessen the impact to the public.
Public Works crews prepare months in advance to make sure equipment is ready for winter weather. When it snows, the city plows will concentrate their efforts on main roads (primary routes) first to accommodate fire, medical and police response, as well as Community Transit, school buses and commuter traffic. Primary routes include roads such as 212th, 220th, 236th, 244th Streets and Cedar Way, 48th, 56th, 58th, and 66th Avenues. As long as it continues to snow, the city will only plow primary routes.
Once the snow has stopped and all primary routes are clear, plows will move to secondary roads. Once the secondary roads are cleared, plows will move into neighborhoods. If at any time it starts snowing again while plows are clearing secondary or neighborhood streets, the plows will return to the primary routes and the process of clearing streets will start over. While the city will eventually get to all streets, it is possible that it might take several days after the final snow event before residents may see a plow on their street. View a now plowing route map (PDF).
Help Your Community During Winter Storms
During a storm event residents can help:
- Move vehicles from City streets until snow removal is complete, as crews can plow better when cars are not parked on the street
- Locate alternate parking if you live on a steep hill
- Stay off roads unless absolutely necessary
- Give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination and allow plenty of room between you and the vehicle ahead
When you encounter trucks engaged in snow or ice removal:
- Yield the right of way if you can do so safely
- Keep back at least 50 feet
- Do not attempt to pass