WEATHER RESOURCE CENTER

YOUR PGH WEATHER RESOURCE CENTER

The PGH: Weather Resource Center is a goto portal for city residents to find up-to-date information on weather related conditions. The PGH:WRC is an evolved idea built upon the Snow Resource Center, incorporating information for summertime resources and other possible weather conditions.

Residents will find the following weather information in the tabs above:

  • Snow Plow Tracker info and Web App
  • DPW Snow Levels
  • Winter Information
  • Summer Information
  • Other Resources
Snow Plow Tracker Banner Image

Pittsburgh Snow Plow Tracker

Need help navigating the Pittsburgh Snow Plow Tracker Application? The PDF provided below shows a walk-through of the applications various options.

Residents will find the following weather information in the tabs above:

  • This represents the first version of the Pittsburgh snow plow tracker site
    • Over time, the City will continue to add features, such as sensors that indicate when the plow and spreader on a truck are actively engaged
  • The plow tracker site shows the current location of Public Works vehicles that have moved within the last four hours along with a travel history of the vehicles
    • Current location is shown with a vehicle icon on the screen while travel history is shown by highlighting roads on the map
  • Currently, approximately 120 Public Works vehicles used for snow and ice control are enabled with GPS devices
    • The location of these vehicles and their travel history is tracked and displayed in the snow plow tracker site
  • The Pittsburgh plow tracker will be activated only during snow events
    • At all other times, users will see a placeholder message asking them to check back during the next snow event
  • While the site shows vehicle travel history, this does not always equate to active treatment of a street
    • The City hopes to pilot more advanced GPS sensors that will allow us to pinpoint only vehicle movements related to active treatment
    • In the meantime the map displays all vehicle movements whether related to active treatment efforts or not
  • Users may see clusters of vehicles on the plow tracker site
    • These clusters appear during shift changes or when vehicles are queued at a salt dome waiting to be refilled

Snow Plow Tracker Open Data

  1. Call the web API to return the list of snow events:
    • Data Link
    • It will return the data in JSON (JavaScript Object Notation) form
    • We limit what snow events are returned. Right now we limit to snow events starting on January 18th
  2. Find a snow event you would like to view by its start and end date/time
  3. Copy/paste the FusionTableUrl field provided for that snow event into a web browser. This will open the Fusion Table that contains the route data for that snow event
  4. The KML data in the table contains the GPS coordinates that define a polyline. Users will need to reverse geocode those coordinates to map this data to individual streets for analysis purposes

You can do the following with the data:

  • View the data directly in the Fusion Table / web browser. You will not be able to edit the data
  • Download the data in CSV format
  • Copy the Fusion Table into your own Google Drive account (if you are signed in to your Google account)
    • This will allow you to play with / edit the data

What are Snow Levels?

Image of Plow Truck plowing snow.

The Department of Public Works classifies storm conditions into Levels. Levels determine the required response timeframe for a given snowstorm. Based on the Storm Levels, it will be expected that all streets will be serviced with clearly defined Response Times, listed below.

Level 0: No service response required.

Level 1 Response Time: Up to 32 hours once the storm has ended.

Standard deployment of snow removal resources
Salting/plowing as needed
Large equipment assigned to primary routes
Small equipment assigned to secondary routes

Level 2 Response Time: Up to 32 hours once the storm has ended.

Salting/plowing as needed
Emphasis on primary routes
Small equipment assigned to secondary routes
All DPW vehicles and equipment put into plow mode
Recommend that resident vehicles be moved from side streets and alleys

Level 3 Response Time: Up to 48 hours once the storm has ended.

Salting/plowing as needed
Heavy emphasis on emergency routes and primary routes; secondary and tertiary routes follow accordingly
All DPW vehicles and equipment put into plow mode
Parking restrictions enforced. (Citations may be issued to vehicles that pose a danger or impede snow removal efforts.)

Level 4 Response Time: Based on a number of various storm variables.

Full deployment of snow removal resources
Primary focus on emergency routes, with primary, secondary and tertiary following accordingly
Parking restrictions enforced (Citations may be issued to vehicles that pose a danger or impede snow removal efforts.)
Use of pre-qualified contractors activated as needed

Snow and Ice Control Program

On average, the City of Pittsburgh gets about 41 inches of snow every winter. Safely navigating our city during winter weather events is everyone’s responsibility and the City of Pittsburgh strives to do it’s best to keep us all moving and to help Pittsburghers connect with neighbors in need.

During a snow and ice event, the City’s main goal is to keep vehicular traffic moving on Pittsburgh's 1,031 miles of streets plus the trails and neighborhood steps. To accomplish this goal, our Department of Public Works' fleet is equipped with plows and computerized salt spreaders.

The Department of Public Works treats roadways according to street classifications that help make road treatment efforts more efficient.

  • Meet Public Safety Needs: Maintain passable roadways to hospitals, schools, fire and police stations.
  • Commerce: Ensure access to large and small businesses.
  • Convenience: Enable travel along residential streets and alleyways

Snow Plow Press Conference - 1.16.15

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