Mankato, Minn. - The Minnesota Department of Transportation (Mn/DOT) would like to remind everyone, especially commercial snow removal operators, that it is against the law to deposit snow, in any fashion, on or next to a public highway or street.
Minnesota state law and many local ordinances prohibit the plowing, blowing, shoveling or otherwise placing of snow onto public roadways. This provision can also include the ditch and right of way area. It is covered under Minnesota Statute 160.27 and various local ordinances.
Violations are punishable as a misdemeanor, but civil penalties can also apply if the placement of snow creates a hazard such as a slippery area, frozen rut or bump which contributes to a motor vehicle or pedestrian accident. The civil liability can extend to both the property owner and the person who placed the snow.
Other hazards created by improper placement of snow on or near a public roadway include drainage problems, drifting, sight obstruction, and safe accessibility. Special attention should be made to keep crosswalks, intersections, entrances and exits clean and unobstructed.
To determine the proper placement of snow for a specific location along the trunk highway/interstate system, you can contact the Mn/DOT Maintenance area at Mankato (1-800-657-3747) or at Windom (1-800-804-3295).
For up-to-date statewide travel information, call 511 or log onto www.511mn.org.