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For Immediate Release: Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Contact: Press Office, 617-635-4461


Urges residents to take caution, abide by snow emergency regulations


BOSTON - Wednesday, February 8, 2017 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced preparations for tomorrow's winter storm, Niko, which is anticipated to bring eight to 14 inches of snow to Boston.

The National Weather Service has issued a weather storm warning, in effect from 6 am to 8 pm Thursday. Temps will be bitterly cold, falling to 17˚ by 5 p.m., low of 9˚ later at night. High wind gusts could reach up to 40 mph in the afternoon. There will be a windchill of -7˚.

Mayor Walsh has declared a snow emergency, beginning at 10 a.m. on Thursday, February 9th. Residents can park in designated discounted garages two hours before the snow emergency takes effect. A full list of garages is available at

The Boston Public Works Department (PWD) will have 600 pieces of equipment on the roads. PWD will start pretreating roads early morning before snow starts. Street cleanup crews will remove flex posts on Mass Ave. to maintain bike lanes during snow removal.

"We are encouraging residents to use caution when traveling, assist the elderly and disabled, and keep up with the shoveling of their property throughout the storm tomorrow," said Mayor Walsh. "The City offers a number of resources geared towards keeping residents safe and aware of current conditions. I encourage everyone to sign up for emergency notifications through AlertBoston and utilize our 311 call center for non-emergency related issues."

To find out more information about resources and services available to residents, please visit

Rules on Clearing Snow

  • Property owners must clear snow, sleet and ice from sidewalks and curb ramps abutting the property within three hours after the snowfall ends or three hours after sunrise if it snows overnight. Failure to comply will result in a fine issued by Boston Public Works Code Enforcement.

  • Removal of snow, ice from a private property to the street or sidewalk is prohibited and will result in a fine issued by Boston Public Works Code Enforcement.

  • Please look here for information about fines associated with improper removal of snow.

Safety Tips

  • Shoveling snow requires significant exertion, please be cautious and pay attention to symptoms. Stop if you feel chest pain, shortness of breath, lightheaded, nauseous/vomiting. Call 911 if those symptoms do not resolve quickly when you stop exertion.

  • Snow piles can make navigating intersections dangerous for walkers and drivers, please take extra care when turning corners with snow piles that might limit visibility.

  • Pedestrians should use caution as visibility will be diminished due to blowing and drifting of the snow caused by high winds.

  • Carbon Monoxide poisoning is a concern during winter weather, especially with the use of generators. Residents should be sure to use their home heating systems wisely and safety, and have a working carbon monoxide detector on each floor of your home. Call 911 immediately if you suspect Carbon Monoxide poisoning.

  • Sitting in a car while idling can be deadly if the tailpipe is blocked. Do not let children sit in an idling car while shoveling. Clear any household exhaust pipes of snow. For example, gas exhaust from heating system or dryer.

  • Remember to keep catch basins and fire hydrants clear.

  • Please check on neighbors, especially the elderly and disabled.

  • Have a contractor check the roof to see if snow needs to be removed. If roof snow can be removed from the ground with the use of a snow-rake, do so with caution. Avoid working from ladders and be mindful of slippery surfaces.

Public Libraries & Community Centers

All Boston Public Libraries and Boston Centers for Youth & Families Community centers will be open during normal business hours. Please check their schedules here.

Helping the Homeless

  • If you see homeless individuals out in the cold who appear immobile, disoriented or underdressed for the cold, please call 911.

  • The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) coordinates a city-wide network of emergency shelters, outreach providers, city agencies and first responders to assist those in need of shelter.

  • Emergency shelters are open 24 hours and will accept any person in need. Men can access shelters through 112 Southampton Street, and women should go to the Woods-Mullen Shelter at 794 Massachusetts Ave. BPHC and the City are working closely with shelter providers to ensure that no client is without shelter, food, resources, and a warm respite from the cold.

  • Emergency shelters are open 24 hours and will accept any person in need.

  • During extreme cold weather, street outreach teams operate with extended hours and provide mobile outreach vans on the streets in the evening and throughout the day.

Residents are encouraged to sign-up for AlertBoston to receive emergency alerts and to call 311, download the BOS:311 app, or tweet at @BOS311 with questions or concerns. Follow @CityofBoston and for the latest updates.


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