Snow Emergency

Snow Shoveling Information

Together, we are all responsible for keeping Duluth safe and comfortable for winter walking.  For your own benefit and to help your neighbors, people pushing strollers or using wheelchairs, and the many people in Duluth who walk, please do your part.

Duluth ordinance requires that property owners clear sidewalks after the end of a snowfall within 24 hours.


When you shovel snow and clear ice:

  • Shovel the sidewalks on all sides of your property, the full width of the sidewalk down to the pavement.
  • Remove all ice from sidewalks.  After the sidewalk is clear, sprinkling a little sand can help prevent slipping on frosty sidewalks.
  • Pile snow onto your yard and boulevard.  It’s against the law to shovel snow into streets and alleys.
  • If you have a corner property, clear curb cuts at corners and crosswalks to the street gutter.  You are not required to clear snow ridges or piles left by the plows beyond the gutter.  City crews will make an effort to return to do this work as quickly as possible, but with over 400 miles of streets to clear across the City, it may take a while. However, clearing an opening sooner can help provide a clear passage for other users.

Avoid a ticket

  • If the City of Duluth gets a complaint or discovers that a sidewalk is not properly cleared, staff will inspect the sidewalk and give the property owner a chance to clear it. 
  • If the sidewalk has not been cleared upon re-inspection, crews will remove the snow and ice from the sidewalk and property owners will be billed for this service.  Unpaid bills will be added to the owner’s property tax.

Shoveling Assistance

If you need shoveling assistance and have not found a solution yet, you may find assistance with one of the following organizations:

  • The Disability HUB MN – 1-866-333-2466
    • A free statewide resource network that helps solve problems and navigate the system
    • Can assist with locating community resources
  • Senior Linkage Line – 1-800-333-2433
    • A free service offered by the State of Minnesota which makes it easy for older adults and their families to find community services or plan for their future
    • Can assist with locating community resources

Are you looking for a snow removal contractor? Follow these tips before you hire a contractor.

  • Ask neighbors and friends for referrals
  • Make sure they have a physical address
  • Ask for references
  • Get everything in writing. Sign a contract for the season
  • Make sure the contract explains services sufficiently
  • Make sure price is clear
  • Ask for a breakdown of all charges
  • Ask the contractor if they have the necessary equipment, what type of equipment do they use
  • Be specific about your needs
  • Verify that they have the required insurance (general liability insurance specifically covering snow removal operations)
  • Ask how quickly they will be able to get to your property
  • Will they come automatically or do you call when service is needed?
  • Talk to 3 or 4 contractors before you pick one