In response to snowplows experiencing difficulties clearing Eau Claire streets of snow in the wake of a 10-inch snowfall Monday/Tuesday, city police are cracking down on people parking on the wrong side of the road.
Because of the large number of non-compliant vehicles in the city and safety concerns, the city of Eau Claire is temporarily doing the following:
• STARTING IMMEDIATELY: If you are parked on the correct side of the street today, but you received a ticket for odd/even parking yesterday and have not moved — you are in violation of the city's 24-hour parking rule and your vehicle will be towed.
• City staff also will be posting temporary no-parking signs in troubled areas that plows can't get through. This is regardless of the odd/even rules. No-parking signs supersede everything between midnight and 6 a.m. So, if you continue to park there, your vehicle will be towed. Ticketing and towing will be starting at midnight in those blocks.
"We know this is something rare for Eau Claire, but our emergency vehicles can't get through these streets, and it could mean someone's life during an emergency," according to a news release issued by the city.
As of mid-afternoon today, more than 500 parking tickets have been issued to motorists. The fine for those tickets is $30.
Because of the record-setting snowfall yesterday, the city of Eau Claire's Streets Division is declaring another snow event with alternate-side parking.
This is a new snow event, which will begin at midnight Thursday and continue until 5 p.m. Saturday.
While the forecast does not call for additional significant snowfall, this extra time is needed, so crews can continue to clear streets, push snow back and haul snow away.
City officials would like to underscore the importance of following alternate-side parking rules and ask that people help spread this message.
Here are the alternate-side parking basics:
• Rules are enforced between midnight and 5 p.m.
• On odd dates, vehicles should be parked on the side of the street with houses that end in odd numbers.
• On even dates, vehicles should be parked on the side of the street with houses that end in even numbers.
• Posted parking signs are the final word. While some “no-parking” signs have a supplemental sign that allows parking during a snow event, many maintain “no parking” at all times. If a sign says “no parking,” you should not park there.
• A snow event lasts for 72 hours.
The Eau Claire Police Department enforces alternate-side parking rules between midnight and 5 p.m. each day of a declared snow event. This gives crews a large part of the day to clear streets while giving residents the opportunity to make the transition from one side of the street to the other between 5 p.m. and midnight.