Snow Removal Operations and Protocol

Community Association Boards contract with snow removal service contractors to provide services on common elements. The Management Company oversees the contract- they do not provide the snow removal services.
Here are some general guidelines of what to expect:

  • SIDEWALKS: These areas will receive service as contracted, usually at 2” depth snow. Usually hand-shoveled.
  • DRIVES / PARKING LOTS: These areas will receive service as contracted, usually at 4” depth snow. Usually plowed.
  • COMMON ELEMENTS: Parks, Courtyards etc. These areas will receive service as contracted, usually at 2” depth snow. Usually ATV/plowed.
  • MAJOR ROADWAYS: Main thoroughfare streets are usually plowed by the City/County. This will vary from HOA to HOA community.
  • BROKEN TREE BRANCHES & UP-ROOTED TREES: If these conditions exist there may be power outages and blocked drives. Efforts will be taken as quickly as possible to mitigate these situations. ALL VENDORS WILL BE BUSY AND DISPATCHED ASAP, including Xcel energy when power lines are compromised.
  • TRASH REMOVAL: Will likely be delayed, albeit private or city provided service.
  • MAPS: Snow shoveling, plowing, snow storage (where it needs to go when plowed) and ice-melt application maps are provided to the contractors to clarify for each community they serve.

Policy Examples

If you live in a Stapleton Sub-Association, here are the MCA Master Community Association Snow Policies for reference:

The “Big Storm”

Unfortunately, snowplow vendors cannot “ramp up” with a big crew each winter since they may or may not even see any snow work. When a big storm hits, they work all night and day to get things taken care of and pull in labor where ever they can find it.

If the entire city is shut down by this storm – it was virtually impossible to keep up. Even if they had a plow and shovelers specifically assigned to one property all day, they would not be able to stay ahead of blizzard conditions. When a storm breaks most crews move into 12 ON 12 OFF shifts. If I70 and I25 are closed, because CDOT cannot keep open, and the entire city is told not to go out, it is reasonable to assume that HOA Plow crews will have trouble keeping up as well.

The city of Denver requires homeowners to have sidewalks cleared within 24 hour of the end of a storm as well leaving residents a reasonable amount of time to dig out. Depth of snow, timing of a storm, and water content are all contributing factors.

Communicating and Getting Updates

The fastest, most effective way HOA’s communicate to their membership is by E-Blast. Snow removal updates are provided as quickly as possible, please be patient. Calls to management company to check status will likely delay the overall process. Be sure you have updated your most recent email address with your HOA Management Company, to ensure you receive the e-blasts and are updated!

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