City of Nampa

Posted on: December 7, 2016

City invests in snow equipment


The city has invested more than $900,000 in four new snow plows/sanders during the past three years to address snow conditions on city roadways, but that’s not enough equipment to handle the worst of worst days, city officials announced Wednesday.


In a 12-hour period Tuesday, four city sanding trucks, a de-icer and another smaller sanding truck covered 767 “lane” miles, spreading more than 100 yards of sand and more than 12,000 gallons of liquid magnesium chloride to fight icy roads, according to Street Superintendent Don Barr.


The sanding trucks, which double as dump trucks in the off-season, also have 12-foot wide snow plows that pivot to the right and left. In the past, the city’s old 11-foot wide snow plows/sanders frequently needed repairs and were not on the road clearing snow when most needed, Barr said.


But even with the new equipment, the Street Division does not have the equipment or manpower to keep roads bare in Nampa when a heavy storm rolls through, Barr said.


The city has 369 “center-line miles” and when you consider the fact that snow plows need at least two passes to clear two lanes or up to five passes on four-lane roads, the city has nearly 790 “lane miles.”


“That’s a lot of ground to cover, forcing the city to prioritize what roads to treat first,” Barr said. “Additionally, crews cover several roads multiple times, depending on the weather conditions. Unfortunately, residential streets are lowest on the priority list.”


“In preparation for our first storm, drivers distributed liquid magnesium chloride Monday night, and last week we had drivers out running the new equipment and learning how to use the new wider plows,” Barr said.


The four new trucks also have GPS monitors so the Street Division can track where the trucks have been and how many miles each covers daily. That kind of monitoring will help the city assess needs down the road, Fleet Superintendent Doug Adams said.




4 multi-use dump trucks with slide-in sanders that also have the ability to inject magnesium chloride into the sand.

  • 1 x 2017 model
  • 1 x 2016 model
  • 2 x 2015 models
  • A de-icer (liquid magnesium chloride) truck
  • A pickup sander/plow
  • Enough staff to keep all vehicles in operation when necessary



1.       Overpasses and underpasses

2.       Signalized intersections and four-way stops and arterial streets (streets with the highest volume)

3.       Schools

4.       Hills and curves

5.       Two-way stops

6.       Collector streets (streets with the next highest volume)

7.       Residential streets

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