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You are hereSnow And Ice Removal
     DPW Office Hours

    Monday - Thursday
    8:30AM - 4:00PM

    8:30AM - 12:00PM

    Saturday, Sunday, & Holidays



    Please click here to view our

    Snow and Ice Policy adopted by the Board of Selectmen in 2006.


    Private roads must meet the minimum standards set by the Board of Selectmen on October 6, 2003 in order to receive snowplowing and sanding services.  The criteria may be viewed here:



    Private Roads Minimum Standards


    Click the link below to view this year’s inspection report.

    2022 Private Roads Inspection Report


    Helpful Snow Removal Tips



    Damage to Private Property

     It should be noted that the municipality is not held responsible for damage to private property that is located within the public right of way. The right of way (ROW) is often 50’ wide, and is often confused by property owners as their own property. In most cases, the ROW often extends 10 to 20 feet of either side of the paved or gravel road. Some homeowners often cultivate extensions of their lawns, place mailboxes, erect fences or stone walls in these areas, which improve the appearance of the street greatly, but are obstructive to good maintenance from being conducted on the roadway. The snow windrow must be pushed back as far as possible for many reasons such as:


    1. Traffic safety

    2. Space for future snow storage

    3. Prevention of melting snow water from running onto the pavement

    4. To permit maximum possible view of traffic of the roads


    Mailboxes located within road limits exist by sufferance only with the responsibility assumed by the owner. It is not possible for the Town to replace or repair any type of structure erected by an abutting land owner within the right-of-way that has been damaged as a result of highway maintenance or construction work. In the event of personal property damage, the Town of Harwich will only be responsible to repair or replace damaged property having been in actual contact with the snow removal equipment that is on private property and not within the public right-of-way. 








     Harwich Snow and Ice Removal Policy

    The Division of Highways and Maintenance is responsible for removing snow from 471 public roads, 24 county roads, and 346 private roads, totaling approximately 200 miles.

    Additionally, we plow Town facilities and parking lots including:

    Snow Plow

    • Police Department
    • Fire Headquarters
    • East Harwich Fire Station #2
    • Town Hall
    • Schools
    • Brooks Library
    • Brooks Academy
    • Community Center
    • Old Recreation Building
    • Cemeteries
    • Saquatucket Parking Lot
    • Wychmere Parking Lot
    • Allen Harbor Parking Lot
    • Schoolhouse Municipal Parking Lot
    • Other areas as required.
     Harwich Snow Removal Procedure
    • As the snow starts, crews begin to sand their assigned routes. Main roads and school bus routes are sanded first, with secondary roads being done as needed.
    • When snow accumulation has reached 2 to 3 inches, plowing begins. Our primary objective is to keep the main roads open.
    • After the storm has ended, cleanup begins with the widening of all roads to ensure passability and to aid in drainage when the snow begins to melt. Crews continue to monitor all roads for icy spots and drifting snow. Usually, an application of salted sand is applied to all streets so that the riding surface remains drivable.


    If your street has not been plowed, please contact our office at (508) 430-7555.

     How you can help

    Before the storm

    If you mark the front of your property with reflectors, please be sure to place them at least one foot back from the pavement. This will enable us to clear to the edge of the road without damaging your lawn.

    It is essential that cars be parked well off the roadways so that the plows can open the roads as much as possible.

    Reduced visibility during a snowstorm sometimes makes it impossible to see mailboxes in time to avoid hitting them. Most often, it is the heavy, wet snow rolling off the plow that damages mailboxes. This cannot be avoided. Any installations within the road layout (mailboxes, sprinkler heads, etc...) are placed at the owner's risk. We encourage residents to set their mailbox posts at the maximum usable distance from the road edge (two foot minimum is recommended).

    During the storm

    Please drive slowly. Excessive speed is the number one cause of winter accidents. On many occasions, people have tried to pass a plow or sander. Inexperienced motorists often do not realize that four-wheel drive does not make a vehicle stop faster. This can create a dangerous situation for themselves, as well as other drivers. Please give snow removal vehicles the right of way, and stay at least 100 feet back from sanders. Not only will this give you a safer surface to drive on, it will also prevent your vehicle from being sandblasted. Please do not drive in winter storms unless it is absolutely necessary.

    After the storm

    Before your final driveway cleanup, please check the street. If it is clean and opened up to its full width, then you are safe. If not, be assured that the plow truck will be back to fill in your driveway. This is not intentional. Like water, moving snow will follow the path of least resistance which, unfortunately, will be your freshly shoveled driveway. Please understand that neither the Town, nor its hired contractors, can come back to shovel or plow out your driveway.  Another helpful hint for minimizing the windrow across your driveway can be seen in this video.

    If there is a catch basin in front of your house, you can help by making sure it is clear of snow and debris, which may prevent the road from draining properly.

    Finally, please be patient. Snow removal is a very arduous and time-consuming task. Your DPW workers and hired snowplow contractors do not get a shift change. They work around the clock until the job is done. We strive for the safest roadways at a reasonable cost, and in the shortest period of time. The cooperation and support of Harwich residents and businesses is greatly appreciated.