About Our Operations


Please be patient, Town personnel will work around the clock to keep roads passable for emergency vehicles. Snow removal is a time consuming and laborious task.

Our scope of responsibilities includes providing snow clearing for:


Methodology Behind Needham's Snow Program

The Department of Public Works utilizes personnel from all divisions during snow and ice events. DPW analyzes each storm and modifies our standard operating procedures as needed. Factors for consideration when planning for a snow & ice event are: weather forecasting, timing, duration, temperature, intensity, snow amount and moisture content within the precipitation. The Town utilizes a four stage program to effectively manage snow and ice events: 

Stage 1: De-icing/Anti-icing Chemical and Abrasive Application

  • Prevent snow and ice from bonding to the pavement
  • Utilize up to eight chemical trucks to cover primary roads, hills and parking lots
  • Underbody scrapers are utilized as needed
  • Approximately 60% of roads are treated during this application

Stage 2: Modified De-Icing Chemical Operation

  • Activated when snow and ice accumulation reaches two or more inches
  • Plows are mounted on chemical trucks
  • Additional plow trucks assist chemical trucks in scraping designated routes and parking lots
  • De-icing liquids are blended with rock salt to help assist with the melting process
  • Under certain storm conditions, designated sidewalk routes will be plowed

Stage 3: Full Plow Operation

  • When snow and ice exceeds three inches with more snow forecasted
  • Chemical operations are suspended
  • Town staff and contractors begin to plow roadways, designated sidewalk routes and parking lots

Stage 4: Snow Removal and Hauling Operations

  • Downtown and Heights business districts, where roadways become too narrow for safe travel
  • Level 1: Curb to curb snow removal and intersection clearing
  • Level 2: Full snow removal from business districts including, snowbanks and sidewalks
  • Level 3: At this level, a state of emergency has likely been declared. Most challenging storms require the removal of trees, debris, and snow and ice that obstruct access to roads. If necessary, roads will be widened with snow blowers.