How many employees typically work a storm? What do they do?

During a snow storm, Public Works crews working to clear streets are divided into two twelve hour shifts to provide 24/7 response. Typically, there are 40 employees per shift actively plowing streets. The Parks and Recreation Department mobilizations additional people for snow/ice response related to the Downtown Mall and side streets between Market and Water, as well and sidewalks that adjoin public property. Other departments and work groups have significant roles during snow storms.

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1. Why does it take so long to plow the streets?
2. I have 24 hours to clear the sidewalk. How do I know when the storm is officially over?
3. What are the consequences of not clearing my sidewalk?
4. I am elderly or physically unable to shovel snow from my sidewalk. What can I do?
5. A street near mine was just plowed. Does that mean my street will be next?
6. How does the City know which streets have been plowed?
7. My trash and recycling wasn’t picked up because of the snow. When can I expect it to be collected?
8. How many vehicles does the city have working during a snow operation?
9. How many employees typically work a storm? What do they do?
10. What chemicals are used to melt snow?
11. Are the chemicals used corrosive or harmful to the environment?