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Trenton Responds Well to Snow Emergencies

Lyons Towing, the company contracted by the Trenton Police Department, said it towed fewer than six cars during the last two snow emergencies.

Photo: Andrew Thurlow
Photo: Andrew Thurlow

Updated: 1/9/14 7:55 p.m. -- adds detail

From Jan. 2 to Jan.7, police handed out 35 violations to owners that failed to promptly remove their vehicles from the street.

The violations are known as civil infractions and cost $25.

“A snow emergency means that...parking isn’t allowed on the streets. Plows need to clear the roadways. They are designed to clear the streets from the curb line," Voss said. 

"When people don’t move their cars, it also blocks fire trucks and ambulances from getting through.”

Third Time’s a Charm

Despite the number of tickets, James Nardone, director of police and fire services, said the city is improving. 

“We had some issues with people that did not have driveways, but we allowed them to park in the municipal lots,” Nardone said.

Residents are permitted to use any municipal parking lot during snow emergencies on a temporary basis, according to the city's Code of Ordinances.

Emergency parking is available at Rotary Park, Elizabeth Park, Trenton City Hall and on Elm Street, north of St. Joseph Church. 

Lyons Towing, the company contracted by the Trenton Police Department, impounded fewer than six cars during the last storm.

“We had a couple stragglers, but the city did a great job responding (to the emergency),” Richard Lyons, co-owner of the company, said.  “If people are out when we are there, we just ask them where they want their vehicle moved,” Lyons said.

“A lot of the times, we’ll just move it into their driveway for them," he said.

Lyons Towing operates out of Woodhaven, Gibraltar, Trenton, Grosse Ile and Monroe.  

Room for Improvement

Although improvement was made in many areas following the first winter storm, there was still one major problem, Voss said.

“One of the biggest complaints we get is people blowing their snow back onto the streets,” Voss said. "It's actually illegal."

According to Public 300 of 1949, it is illegal to shovel or plow snow and ice onto any road or highway.

State law also prohibits depositing of snow on a road or shoulder if it blocks motorists’ views of traffic and signage.

"I'd have to say overall, the city did a great job," Voss added. 

andrew.thurlow@patch.com

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