Snow/Ice Removal Plan
During the winter months, Grounds Services has responsibility for snow and ice removal services. We continuously monitor weather forecasts of hazardous weather conditions from various services; however, freezing rain and other dangerous conditions are usually difficult to predict and experience has shown that a perfectly safe situation can turn treacherous in a matter of a few minutes. We are entirely committed to making the University's sidwalks, stairs and roadways as safe as possible during and after winter storms. To the maximum extent possible, we will attempt to anticipate problems and take necessary precautions.
If you are interested in assisting with our efforts, we do hire student assistants to help with snow removal each winter. Look for announcements during the fall semester detailing the dates when we will hold informational sessions for these positions. If you cannot make it to one of the information sessions, send us an email and you will be provided with instructions on how to apply for a job.
Please read our list of Snow & Ice Safety Tips.
Click the following link for information on MSU Inclement Weather Notifications.
If you encounter a problem area on campus that you believe requires our attention, we encourage you to report the problem to the Facilities Service Desk at 973-655-5444 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The Service Desk will contact the appropriate supervisor to address the issue. Emergencies after hours or on weekends should be directed to University Police at 973-655-5222.
Each year, our snow/ice procedures are updated to reflect any changes in the University's layout (new construction, parking lot closures, etc.) and our staff members participate in a variety of of training sessions related to snow/ice removal (snow blower operation, shoveling techniques, proper ice melt application, etc.). This ensures the best possible service to the campus community during the snow/ice season.
We provide the following specific services:
Pretreatment priority zones are as follows:
- Priority Areas
- Red Hawk Deck 5th Floor Bridge
- Steps leading from Lot 24A to Blanton Hall
- Ramp leading from Parking Lot 17 to Student Center
- Walkway from Parking Lot 7 to College Avenue
- Handicap ramp at Student Center
Note: If liquid de-icing material is unavailable, the priority areas will be pre-treated with calcium chloride pellets.
Sidewalks and Walkways
Snow removal efforts will commence for sidewalks and walkways when the snow reaches a depth of one-half inch. All walkways and sidewalks will be treated with Safe-Step or Calcium Chloride. For heavier snows, walkways and sidewalks will be plowed then salted.
Equipment used: shovels, manual push salt spreaders, walk behind snow blowers
- University Police walkways
- Walkway from Red Hawk Deck to Dickson Hall
- Walkway from Dickson to University Hall (west of Dickson Hall)
- Walkway from NJT Deck to Field House
- Clove Road apartment sidewalks
- Village at Little Falls sidewalks
- All shuttle bus stops
- Curbs at Crosswalks on Normal Avenue
- All interior campus walkways (Plow crews do most of this work; shovel crews “clean up” remaining areas)
- Ramps, cut curbs and adjacent surfaces
- 8th level of the Red Hawk Deck
Note: The walkways and stairways within The Heights residential complex are not maintained by MSU's Office of Facilities Services. Capstone On-Campus, the operator of The Heights complex, provides snow removal services for this location on campus.
Entrances to all facilities and all steps
Snow removal efforts will commence for building entrances and steps when snow reaches a depth of one-half inch. All entrances and steps will have Calcium Chloride applied. For heavier snows, entrances and steps will be shoveled then treated. (This list is not in priority order, as there are typicaly numerous teams working at multiple buildings simultaneously.)
Note: The steps at the southern entrance to College Hall, the ramp entrance to the Alexander Kasser Theater, and the pedestrian ramp from the 5th level of the Red Hawk Deck have ice melting coils; shoveling and calcium chloride treatments are therefore not required.
Plowing operations on the campus are broken down into the following two zones: (1) Truck Plowing Zones (2) Tractor Plowing Zones
Snow removal efforts will commence when snow covers the road surface; rock salt will be applied. For heavier snowfalls, all roadways will be plowed then salted.
Pre-treating of certain roadways is typically performed near to the time of the predicted storm. Areas typically pretreated include:
- The entire MSU Shuttle Route
- HIlly terrains
- All Emergency routes.
Our Snow Removal Fleet
A concerted effort has been made to enhance the aging snow & ice removal fleet. Our efforts have been quite successful and the following constitutes the current vehicles, equipment and structures:
- Dump trucks with 3 yard salters and 8 foot plows for roadways and parking lots (4)
- Pick-up trucks with 2 yard salters and plows large walkway and small parking lots (2)
- 28 hp tractors with plows and brushes for sidewalks (5)
- Small utility vehicles with plows and salters for sidewalks (4)
- Back-hoe with a 10 foot pusher box for the large lots (1)
- Walk-behind snow blowers (14)
- On-campus salt bin
Please note that the following is a list of the areas where walking modifications may be made during winter storms. If necessary , the areas indicated below will be barricaded until the snow stops and major areas are cleared. In most cases, a small area will be cleared to allow access or alternate route utilized. This will enable University personnel to concentrate efforts on major areas of the campus and maintain ample safe walkways for students and staff:
- Stairway from CarParc Diem to Blanton Hall (the old stairway).
- East and west side stairs in the front of the Student Center.
- Two sets of steps on the east side of Partridge Hall leading to the Student Center Quad.
- Most sections of the steps on the east side of Kasser Theater.
- Half of the steps between the southeast side Kasser Theater and College Hall.
- The two sets of steps that lead from College Hall to the Freeman/Russ/Cali Quad.
- The large set of steps that lead from Lot 7 to Panzer Athletic Center (northeast corner).
- The large set of steps on the west side of the Cali School of Music.
- Most of the steps in front of Cafe Diem.
- Steps leading from campus to the Newman Center.
- The steps leading from Lot 30 to the areas surrounding the new School of Business.
- The walkways from Dickson/University Hall to the stairs that connect to Lot 30 on Carlisle Road will also be closed during winter storms and will be open only when they can be made safe. The suggested alternate walking route to connect Lot 30 to Dickson and University Halls is via Yogi Berra Drive to the new stairway that connects CarParc Diem to the campus core. (DO NOT use Webster Road as a walking path from Lot 30 to University and Dickson Halls -- there are no sidewalks along this road, which is confined to buses and construction vehicles exclusively.
- The steps from Lot 28S to Lot 27.