Snow and Ice Removal
With the approach of freezing weather, the City's Public Works Crew sprays magnesium chloride, a de-icing agent on all main arterials, overpasses, hills, and roundabouts.
Magnesium chloride is most effective when applied to dry roads. It is effective as a de-icing agent between the temperatures of 40 degrees Fahrenheit and -15 degrees Fahrenheit.
The City began using magnesium chloride in the winter of 2011/2012. It is an environmentally safe product that is over 85% less corrosive than salt and has half the toxicity of baking soda. Magnesium chloride has been used for decades nationwide, including by the City of Port Angeles and the Washington State Department of Transportation, and has shown no adverse effect on streets, surrounding plants, or the overall environment. The City uses a product called FreezGard CI Plus which includes corrosion inhibitors.
Magnesium chloride is a cost effective de-icing agent costing the City approximately $500 to $1,500 per year compared to road salt at $5,000 to $8,000 per year and sand at $6,000 to $10,000 per year, plus the cost of extra street sweeping to pick up the sand after each storm event.
Residents can expect to see some damp streaks in a striping pattern on the roads where the de-icing agent is laid down.
When the Public Works Crew is spraying the streets with magnesium chloride, the truck may need to drive below the speed limit. The City asks drivers for their patience and to provide adequate distance from the truck to ensure that their cars do not get sprayed with the de-icing agent.
Learn more about magnesium chloride.
During heavy storms, the City crew concentrates on clearing the main arterials first. Washington Street, Sequim Avenue, 5th Avenue, 3rd Avenue, overpasses and school routes (when schools are in session) are the top priorities.
Crews spread magnesium chloride, a de-icing agent, on main arterials, overpasses and roundabouts throughout cold winter weather. Crews will also utilize the salt truck to handle heavy build-up of packed snow and ice if necessary.
There are 54 miles of City-owned roads and alleyways in the City, in addition to parking lots and sidewalks. There are also 19 miles of private streets and roadways within the city limits that the city does not clear. The City asks the community to help by clearing snow from the sidewalks that adjoin their homes and businesses.
See the City's snow clearance (PDF) route.