Albany snow emergency takes effect Tuesday after record-breaking storm

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ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Albany’s city leaders say now matter how many years pass and warnings go out, they still end up towing dozens of cars every snow emergency.

“We don’t wanna tow cars. We know that there are folks out there that think that it’s some kind of revenue opportunity. We would rather not collect a dime in tow charges or in tickets,” says Mayor Kathy Sheehan during a press conference Sunday.

“There’s only so many resources, so many trucks and drivers, so if people aren’t parked, yes it takes time. They’ve got to wait until a tow trucks come tow things out of the way, so yes it slows things down. Obviously it’s more money and hours, less productivity,” explains Frank Zeoli, Deputy Commissioner for the Albany Department of General Services.

Cars need to be moved to the even side of all streets by 8 p.m. Tuesday. Deputy Commissioner Zeoli says there are a lot of misconceptions about what you can and can’t do. For instance, whether or not there’s a grace period.

“By 8 p.m., you need to be gone and moved,” he explains to NEWS10’s Mikhaela Singleton. “There is always a starting point. You may be on that side or that street that we start on directly at 8 o’clock or we could hit you at 11 o’clock. So you know really you need to kind of be prepared.”

He adds the snow emergency lasts the full 24 hours on one side of the street and 24 hours on the other. No circling the block after the plows pass.

“They might have come through, but that doesn’t mean they’re not going to come through again, so you want to make sure that you stay out for that full 24 hours,” he says.

Zeoli adds the most important thing is to respect the city employees working to make our streets safe.

“These men and women, very hard working men and women, are working 12 hour shifts and they’ve been working for days on end. I think it’s like with any person’s job, just understand they have a job to do and they’re trying to do their best.”

Albany Police will have extra hands on deck to start patrolling right before the snow emergency takes effect. Center Square residents have enjoyed the luxury when officers try to blare their sirens and announce on the loudspeakers giving those last minute stragglers time to get out of the way.

Zeoli says that is not a policy, but a courtesy. He advises residents give themselves plenty of time and move to one of the free city lots and garages.

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