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Michigan State UniversityMichigan State UniversityInfrastructure Planning and Facilities

Snow and ice removal

Please call dispatch at (517) 353-1760 to report problem areas.

Read about IPF's 'green' practices for snow removal.

MSU's commitment to snow and ice removal

IPF crew members clear walkways, steps, loading docks, sidewalks, roads and parking lots. In campus parking lots, IPF Landscape Services staff plows the lots and all of the empty spaces that can be accessed, along with the sidewalks in the area, but the unit does not shovel out individual cars. The staff does, however, do some extra "touch-up" on spaces that are reserved for persons with disabilities.

IPF plows campus streets when it snows more than 2 inches or when safety is an issue. Before the snow starts to fall, the staff evaluates the process of removal. It often varies with the amount and type of snow in the forecast and the timing of the snow fall. The general goal is to have campus "cleaned up" by the time students and employees start their day (7 to 8 a.m.). When the crews are called in, they start with roads, parking lots and ramps, and established routes for persons with disabilities. At about 5:30 a.m., a portion of the crew switches to walks.

In order to minimize the risk of slip and fall injuries due to icy and slippery surfaces, the following measures are in place:

IPF removes snow and applies ice-melt compound to roads, parking lots and sidewalks up to university buildings. IPF and RHS clear building entrances, stairs, landings and barrier-free ramps.Ice-melt compound will be provided in containers at building entrances to be used as needed. The buckets will be replenished by the building custodians. (Please note that those living in residence halls or university apartments should inform the facility manager of the need for ice-melt compound.)

Emergency Response Teams

Because winter weather emergencies do not only come during normal work schedules, snow and ice may accumulate outside the building hosting a special event. To respond to those situations, IPF uses its Emergency Response Teams to handle smaller snow and ice emergency situations on campus in an effort to make sure walkways and vehicular thoroughfares are safe and passable for the public — even when winter weather strikes after-hours.

Simple ways to help the snow, ice removal process

Report an area in need of snow or ice removal by e-mailing or by calling (517) 355-1855. For areas near university residence halls, inform the facility manager.

Use the main entrance of a building during a snow event.

Work with snow-removal experts to ensure safety. Snow-removal equipment is large, loud and difficult to stop. Avoid darting out in front of or behind such equipment, and make eye contact with a snow-removal driver before crossing the street in front of them.

  • On sidewalks: Avoid parking so close to the sidewalk that the car’s bumper hangs over the walk. It creates an obstacle for snow-removal equipment.
  • In parking lots: If possible, park in the plowed areas of parking lots to help snow-removal workers quickly clear the unplowed areas without navigating around vehicles.
  • In residence hall loops: Parking is prohibited in these loops between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m. to allow snow-removal workers time to clear them.

Do not chain bikes to signs. It is illegal on campus and creates obstacles for snow-removal equipment.

Help us treat icy spots! Buckets of ice-melt compound can be found at entrances to most campus buildings. If you see an icy spot, please feel free to spread some of the ice-melt around to cover the area. Give the ice-melt time to take effect. Those living in residence halls or university apartments should inform the facility manager of the need for additional ice-melt. Also, while safety is priority one, using the ice-melt compound responsibly is important to limit environmental impacts.



If you need immediate emergency service or have a general question about IPF, call (517) 353-1760. For routine or special services submit an online service request.