NICE BUS removes snow and controls ice at all of its transit facilities. These facilities include bus garages and depots and some shelters. While some of this work is contracted, the greater majority is performed in-house by a facilities maintenance staff of modest size.
With a small staff and large winter storm workload, NICE establishes priorities to insure it fields its service and tends to the needs of its customers.
Priority #1 – Operations
In order for buses and trains to begin service, garages, driveways, and support facilities must be cleared so operators, mechanics, police, street supervisors and operational support staff can begin serving customers.
Priority #2 –Passenger Access
NICE clears snow and ice from customer areas at locations with the most activity -- transit centers, and the select heaviest used stops -- to permit safe passage for the highest number of customers. In very heavy snowfalls, this work may be accomplished in two stages, initially providing only a walkway to a bus loading area returning later to complete the work. In lighter snowfalls, the entire facility will be cleared.
Priority #3 – Customers with Limited Mobility
Once high-use facilities are cleared, NICE begins meeting the travel needs of customers with limited mobility.
Priority #4 – Customer-Waiting Shelters
After high-use limited mobility sites have been addressed, NICE will begin clearing some waiting shelters it owns throughout the county. It is important to note that not all shelters are owned by the County. Generally, County Transit shelters do not display paid advertising and NICE does not own bus benches – these shelters and benches are maintained by private companies. In some cases, shelters are owned and maintained by villages, in these cases, the village is responsible for snow removal.
With its limited staff, NICE is not able to clear snow from the nearly 4500 transit stops throughout the region. NICE relies on adjacent property owners and businesses to clear bus stops and sidewalks. Some municipalities both engage in this work with city crews and have created ordinances that require property owners to address snow removal or face financial penalties.
NICE wants to hear from its customers when problems persist following a snowfall. Call Customer Relations at 516.336.6600 or use the online contact form. NICE will address the issue by either doing the work itself or notifying one of its partners – municipality, private shelter company etc. – of the deficiency.