In the winter months, Public Works maintains over 144 miles of public roads. We divide these miles into 14 plow routes, three of which are maintained by a private contractor (Crooker Construction) working for us.
Snow Plowing Operation
When a snowstorm (or freezing rain) begins, we start work by plowing and treating the major arteries (River Road, Durham Road, Pleasant Street, Mill Street, Maine Street, Bath Road, Route 123 and Route 24), and then the in-town streets and collector roads. Our goal is to keep the roads as safe as possible and try to keep snow or ice from bonding and packing to the pavement.
We will continue plowing the routes until the storm subsides and then go back over all routes to widen-out the roadways and clean up at the intersections. It is our policy to clear the shoulder approximately five (5) feet beyond the edge of pavement.
Clean-up of Maine Street is a complicated process that is done late at night to ensure the safest work environment possible for our equipment operators. We clear the sidewalks and windrow the snow into the center of this wide street, and then blow it into trucks that then haul the snow away. Until we are able to perform this work, please drive carefully on Maine Street!
Brunswick has 40 miles of sidewalks, and we begin clearing them as soon as possible after our initial road work is complete. We first do the downtown area and the school zones and then work our way to all other areas. Please be patient; we recognize the needs for safe pedestrian walkways, but depending on the type and amount of snowfall, this process can take several days to complete.
Snow Plowing Diagram
The diagram shows how your driveway can be initially cleared to reduce the possibility that after the plow passes you will be snow-bound again. We suggest that you clear your driveway in this manner, shoveling snow in the direction of traffic and clearing a "pocket" next to your driveway as shown; snow accumulation on the plow will drop into that pocket and the amount that goes into the driveway opening will be minimized.
Emergency Parking Bans
Emergency parking bans are routinely declared during storm events or for clean-up after a storm ends. If you want to receive an email notification when a parking ban is declared be sure to subscribe to our email notification list.
When parking bans are called no overnight parking is permitted on all town roads or in any municipal parking lots, including the Recreation Center. For those needing overnight parking, the Cabot Street municipal lot and the Cedar Street Park & Ride have been designated for use during winter parking bans. You may park overnight in these two lots only and you must relocate your vehicle by 7:00 AM so that we can clear snow from these lots.
How You Can Help
- Make certain your vehicle is ready for winter driving and do not drive in winter storms unless absolutely necessary.
- Reduce your speed to match the driving conditions. This is the number one cause of winter accidents.
- Please do not park in the roadway or shoulder area during a storm. Our plows must be able to clear the area the first time through without having to return to clean it up later. Remember, emergency parking bans are typically declared during a snow event or the night after so we can do clean up. If you park on street during a parking ban your car will be ticketed and towed at your expense. Also, please do not place any rocks, marker posts or similar obstructions within 6 feet of the road edge. We need to plow out this area for drainage and space to put snow from future storms.
- Do not shovel, snowblow or have your driveway plowed into or across the road. This is prohibited by state law and can cause a serious traffic hazard. If possible, it is best to place snow on the side of your driveway opposite the direction from which the plow is coming. That way, the plow will push snow away from your driveway rather than back into it.
- If possible, wait until the road has been plowed before cleaning out the end of your driveway. There is no practical way to plow the the road without depositing snow into your driveway. Please understand the Town cannot go back and shovel or plow out the end of any private driveway.
- Help reduce the possibility of a broken mailbox post. All our plow operators are urged to take precautions to avoid hitting mailbox posts. However, experience has shown that with reduced visibility during a storm it is not always possible for a driver to see a post in time to avoid striking it with the wing of the plow. Any installation within the highway right-of-way, including a mailbox, is placed there at the owner's risk. Therefore, owners are encouraged to put mailboxes at the maximum usable distance back from the roadway pavement and we recommend a 42 inch mounting height with reflectors on the post. For more details, please see our printable mailbox information (PDF). Posts should also be checked for deterioration or rot to reduce the possibility of their being broken off simply by the weight of plowed snow.
- Public Works does not have a dispatcher on duty except during normal workdays from 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM (call 207-725-6654). During a bad storm please only call when absolutely necessary. For emergencies you may also contact the Police Department at 207-725-5521.
- Don't be misled by plow trucks riding with their plows up. They may be going in for fuel or repairs or headed for another area. Public Works maintains all roads in Brunswick, except those maintained by the Maine Department of Transportation (MDOT): I-295 and the Exit 28 ramp to Pleasant Street, divided Route 1 from Maine Street to the West Bath town line, and the Old Portland Road (Route 1 to the Freeport line). Please call MDOT at 207-885-7000 (Scarborough office) to report a problem with these roads.
- Finally, please be patient. Whether it is your driveway for which you are responsible or the 140 road miles that the Town is responsible for, snow removal is an arduous and time consuming job. If a storm is of long duration, understand that we are a small organization with limited reserves and our workers continue around the clock until the job is done. We strive for the safest streets and roads at a reasonable cost in the shortest period of time.