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SDOT Winter Weather Home Page
Seattle's Winter Weather Readiness and Response Plan
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How to Prepare for Winter Storms
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How to Prepare for Winter Storms

During Winter Storms What You Can Do

Vehicle preparedness

____ Warm clothes in trunk

____ Chains in trunk

____ Full gas tank

____ Sand/shovel in trunk

____ Window ice scraper

____ Flares, flashlight in trunk

____ Antifreeze

____ Family emergency plan

____ Familiarity with school and daycare plans

____ Alternative shelter plans

____ Alternative transportation arrangements

____ Identified snow routes

____ Bus timetables

Home preparedness

____ Battery-operated radio/flashlights

____ Fresh batteries

____ Well-stocked provisions

____ Necessary medications

  • Listen to the weather forecast.  Have a plan in case severe weather strikes.
  • Make sure you have a snow shovel and salt or a de-icer product to clear your driveway and sidewalks.
  • When the storm hits, don’t drive if you don’t have to. Fewer cars on the street during and after a storm make it easier and safer to clear streets.
  • Use the bus. SDOT works closely with Metro Transit to ensure bus routes are passable.
  • If you must drive, make sure your car is ready. Carry chains and be prepared to put them on. Make sure windows are clear and the snow is brushed from the entire car.
  • Slow down and allow plenty of room between you and the next vehicle. Be prepared for ice you cannot see, especially on bridges and raised roadways.
  • Watch for and respect Street Closed signs. They are placed by the police for your safety.

Winter Storms - Be a Good Neighbor

You are part of the team too! Your participation and awareness can help.

  • Clear the sidewalk and nearby street drains of leaves. Place your leaves in a yard waste container, not in the street.
  • When snow falls, shovel and de-ice your sidewalk.  You can use salt or a de-icer product. Children, senior citizens and your mail carrier will appreciate your effort. If you have elderly neighbors, consider clearing theirs. If everyone does, sidewalks will be open to reach the store and bus stop.
  • Clear your garbage carts of snow and ice. It makes pickup easier and more efficient.
  • Snowplows will usually push snow to the side of the road, so you may need to remove the extra snow from your driveway. Also, if you park on a snowplow route, you may need to dig your car out.
  • Businesses should shovel the sidewalks outside their locations so customers and employees can get around. 


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