Winter Road Maintenance
Jefferson County’s maintenance department provides snow and ice control for all county roads. Snow removal is organized by the following priority system:
Priority 1 – Major arterial routes
Priority 2 - Secondary and collector arterioles along with hillside residential areas
Priority 3 - Other rural access roads and residential streets
A liquid deicing solution, and salt product along with sand may be applied to the more heavily traveled arterioles.
The snowplow routes in Jefferson County are set according to priorities outlined in our policy. The routes designated in RED are our highest priority. These are “Major Collectors” and are important because they link communities, and are critical to effective emergency response. We focus on RED roads until they are open, well sanded, and safe for travel. In case of an ongoing storm, we might have to stay on RED roads for an extended period of time just to make travel between communities and emergency response possible.
Once our RED roads are in good enough condition, we move to those roads designated in BLUE. BLUE roads connect some communities to each other and to RED roads.
Once those are done and traffic can flow throughout the County, we move into the residential areas. Although we understand these roads are extremely important to those who live on them, they are of lesser importance to the entire County and are therefore last on the priority list.
The Road Division budgets for a “normal” winter. We have plows, sanders, sand and supplies to cover the snowfall of a regular winter. It is not possible or fiscally responsible to budget for an emergency, having no real idea what that might be. When we experience an extremely heavy snowfall with extended effects, we respond as quickly and efficiently as possible, working around the clock when necessary.
- When the roads are plowed the snow must be plowed completely to the curb line to ensure mail delivery and to ensure that water can reach drains. Trucks providing traction sand usually follow plowing.
- Snow plows do not plow snow to the center of cul-de-sacs; it blocks access of Emergency Response vehicles.
- Jefferson County does not have “boots” or “gates” on snow removal equipment that allow plows to skip over driveway entrances. Therefore, a continuous berm of snow is left along all roads and across driveways, private roads/lanes and sidewalks.
- To assist with the de-icing process sand may be mixed with a salt product or sprayed with a de-icing liquid.
- Vehicles parked on the roadway may impair our ability to plow the road at all. Please remove parked vehicles from the road during a snow event.
- State law prohibits the maintenance or plowing of private roads by County forces.
Please try to be patient. We will get to you as soon as possible, regardless of the size of the storm. The Road Crew thanks you for your understanding and continued support.
To report a problem with a county road, contact the appropriate shop using the contact information in the right-hand column or complete the online problem report by clicking here. If you feel like it is an issue that needs to be addressed immediately please call the Sheriff's Department at (360)344-9779 ext. 0.
The Road Department has ____ truck plows (_____ include sanders), _____ graders, ______ loaders, and _______ de-icing trucks. Jefferson County crews work in 12-hour shifts around the clock to ensure the entire road system is plowed.