We received messages from both the City of Cedar Springs and Howard City Police asking for people to keep sidewalks and hydrants clear of snow.
The City of Cedar Springs has an ordinance that requires homeowners and businesses to keep the sidewalks in front of their homes clear of snow and ice. If it happens during the day, the person has 12 hours after it stops to remove it, and if it happens overnight, they have until 6 p.m. the next day.
“The City could clear it and charge for it, or write a ticket if they chose to,” explained City Manager Thad Taylor. “But we haven’t wanted to do that with the harsh weather conditions we’ve had,” he explained, noting the amount of snow and below zero temps. “We understand that the weather has been brutal, but now that the temperature is climbing back up, we just need people to voluntarily take care of it.”
Taylor noted that the main reason for the ordinance is for safety reasons. Besides the obvious issue of slipping and falling, Taylor pointed out that if sidewalks aren’t clear, pedestrians must walk on the street. “If pedestrians and drivers are vying for the same space on the road, bad things could happen,” he said.
He also pointed out that there are some places where there is bone dry concrete. “A lot of people are taking care of it and we truly appreciate homeowners and business owners who are keeping their sidewalks clear,” said Taylor.
Fire hydrants also need to be clear of ice and snow, to help local firefighters in case of an emergency.