Columbia Public Works plans to tow cars on snow priority routes
COLUMBIA - With snow in the forecast, Columbia Public Works plans to ticket and/or tow cars parked on certain roads during heavy winter weather.
Scott Bitterman, Columbia Public Works street manager, said priority snow routes are high-traffic roadways in the city, such as Broadway or Chapel Hill Road. If the snow reaches above two inches, cars parked along those streets will be subject to a $100 ticket. He said they will also be towed once a truck becomes available.
Bitterman said the reason for towing is to help the city clear roads more quickly.
"We always try to keep the priority snow routes clear of vehicles," Bitterman said. "The reason that we have the towing on the snow priority routes is to allow the truck drivers to clear those roadways much quicker so we can clear the city much quicker."
Bitterman said another reason is to make it easier for emergency vehicles to use the roads during winter weather.
"We want to make sure emergency responders can get to their destinations as safely and quickly as possible. So keeping those cars off the priority routes really helps us achieve that much quicker."
This is the second year the city will tow cars left on snow priority roads. Bitterman urges drivers to park on other roads to avoid being ticketed and towed.
"We really would just like voluntary compliance," BItterman said. "It's a benefit to the whole community."
Bitterman said the majority of roads in town are not priority snow routes. Those that are have signs on the side of the street warning drivers not to park there during heavy snowfall. He suggested drivers park around the corner from priority snow routes or in city parking garages.