Why businesses need to have a snow removal plan in place early
While we’ve already had our fair share of snow in northeast New Jersey, the worst could be yet to come. According to weather experts, our area may see as much as 75 inches before Old Man Winter decides to call it quits. The reason for so much snow is likely due to an El Nino system that could develop. Of course, the last El Nino caused “Snowzilla” in 2016, but the one currently predicted isn’t expected to be as strong. However, everyone – especially business owners – have to be prepared for a big storm, as well as the aftermath.
The government’s role in snow removal
Different cities and counties have their own rules when it comes to snow removal, but in Clifton, the plows won’t start moving until two inches have accumulated. And, of course, when the snow is falling fast – and it just keeps coming down – it can pile up very quickly. Even if the plows do get to your neighborhood right away, it may take days for them to return. This is why business owners can’t rely solely on the government to clear the snow. In fact, according to Chapter 383 of Clifton’s city code, they are required to get rid of snow and/or ice in a timely manner.
Section 383-1 states that “The owner or tenant in possession of any lands abutting or bordering upon the sidewalks and gutters of any public streets of the City shall remove or cause to be removed all snow and/or ice therefrom, within 12 hours after the same shall fall or be formed thereon.”
Penalties for non-compliance
If a business owner doesn’t have snow or ice removed within 12 hours, the city may do it for him or her. However, the owner will still be on the hook for the costs. This will then “become a lien and tax upon such lands and shall be added to and become part of the taxes next to be levied and assessed upon such lands.” On top of that, a violation could result in a $500 fine or even a jail term of 90 days.
Why businesses should be proactive
Despite having the most-advanced forecasting tools at their disposal, often weather folks still get it wrong. Suddenly that storm that was only expected to drop a few inches has now become a blizzard. Business owners need to be proactive about getting rid of the snow, even days or even weeks before it falls. This is why it pays to work with a snow removal company you can count on. In addition to staying compliant with local laws, there are numerous other benefits of having snow pros on speed dial, including:
Having parking lots, walkways, and other areas clear of ice and snow will help improve the safety for customers and clients. In addition to giving them peace of mind, this will also reduce your liability for injuries. Plus, if you and your employees are the ones doing the shoveling, this increases the chance of someone on your team getting hurt.
Paying for snow removal services may seem like the opposite of saving money, but it’s not. For one thing, if you’re going to do it yourself, you will need to have the right equipment, including shovels, scrapers, salt, etc. For bigger jobs, you’ll probably need a plow to attach to a truck or SUV. Even if you have all of this stuff already, spending time on this task will take attention away from other parts of your business, resulting in lost productivity.
Being closed for any amount of time during regular business hours can be detrimental. A commercial snow removal company has the best tools and experienced professionals who will make quick work of the job. Plus, they can get there well before you open so that the disruption to your business can be minimal.
Hire experts to clear your snow
Before the next big one hits, get in touch with Mikula Contracting. We have been helping businesses in northern New Jersey with snow removal for over 70 years. For more information on our services, please call us at 973-772-1684 or send us a message through our online contact form.