Prep your building now for tomorrow's snow day

By Lucy Cohen Blatter  | November 25, 2014 - 1:59PM

If the weather reports are to be trusted, a snowy Thanksgiving is blustering its way to the city, with snowflakes expected to start falling tomorrow morning. Below, information for navigating nature's wrath from your NYC digs: 

Shovel right

Here's one instance where wintertime can be easier in the city than the suburbs: if you're a renter or an apartment owner in a staffed-up building, it's on the maintenance staff to shovel the sidewalks. Phew. That said, this is no easy task, and a hearty thank you or hot cup of coffee to those doing the back-breaking work will go a long way. 

If you own a townhouse or live in a self-managed co-op or condo, you have certain sidewalk-clearing responsibilities. Per city guidelines, you have to clear the white stuff no later than four hours after the end of the snowfall or no later than 11 a.m. if the snow ended after 9 p.m. the night before. If it freezes and gets too hard to shovel, you're allowed to add sand, sawdust or similar material to help it melt. (Check the Department of Sanitation's snow-removal guidelines or spend three minutes watching this video from a property manager, which covers the rules of snow removal.) Oh, and don't just dump the snow in the street or on a fire hydrant (we assume that last bit goes without saying). You may face a fine of up to $350 per infraction. 

If your car is buried, a building staff member or local teen may help you dig it out; expect to pay around $20 to $25 for the luxury (or more if the snow has turned icy).

Stay informed...

If the city releases its snowplows, you can check their progress at PlowNYC. Head to Notify NYC to subscribe to text, email or phone emergency alerts from the city. And for regular updates on alternate-side parking suspensions, which are likely to happen when it snows, sign up here.

...and calm

Snow day etiquette is essential. Think not letting Fido pee right in front of the building or leaving your slushy boots in the hallway for days. 


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