As we are well and truly in the 2022-23 winter season, we wanted to remind our residents and visitors about the City of Big Bear Lake services, what we all need to prepare for before a storm, and how you can access important information.

Snow Removal

Snow Removal

During the winter months, the Public Works Department will monitor the weather and street conditions daily. Storm conditions will vary due to temperature, wind, snow moisture content and snowfall amounts. As storm conditions vary, so will the response of the Public Works Department to changing conditions. The City of Big Bear Lake, and on-call contractors, are responsible for clearing Big Bear Lake maintained roads. Caltrans District 8 is responsible for clearing Big Bear Boulevard and the state highways leading up to Big Bear.

Public Works crews begin plowing public streets when approximately three inches (3”) of snow accumulates, and continue plowing throughout each winter storm. Our goal is to meet three (3) basic community safety and welfare needs:
• Maintain access to/for emergency services (Fire, EMS, Law Enforcement)
• Provide reasonably safe driving conditions throughout the winter months
• Maintain access to businesses and services

Every City of Big Bear Lake maintained public street is eventually plowed during heavy snowfall, and we ask that you please be patient during snow removal operations. Our crews work as quickly as they can during inclement weather. Typically, maintained public streets are plowed in the early morning hours, creating a snow berm at the street edge and across driveways each time a street is plowed. In order to avoid duplication of effort, we recommend delaying driveway shoveling until snow plows have passed, and significant additional snow accumulation is not anticipated. When driveways are shoveled, please deposit snow on the right driveway edge (facing the street). When all streets have been plowed and are safe for travel, crews begin reducing snow berms at residential driveways through our unique Berm Reduction Program (Information Below).

Snow removal on SR 18 (Big Bear Blvd.) is performed by Caltrans, and berm reduction is not available to properties with driveways extending onto the highway.
Berm Reduction

Berm Reduction

City of Big Bear Lake residents are eligible for no-cost snow berm reduction.

Snow berm reduction begins only after all maintained public streets have been made safe for travel, and additional heavy snowfall accumulation is not anticipated. Snow berm reduction may not begin for several hours after snowfall begins. Snow berms will not be completely eliminated. The goal of this free service is to reduce the burden of manual driveway snow removal for our residents.

Only residential driveways clearly identified by unobstructed bright orange snow poles placed at the driveway edges are eligible for this program.

Additional Berm Reduction Guidelines:
1. Always park vehicles OFF the road or street right-of-way.
2. Keep roads clear of all snow tools and devices used for shoveling.
3. Keep small children inside when the snow equipment is in your neighborhood.
4. DO NOT let children build igloos or caves in the snow banks near the street.
5. Whenever possible, wait to clear driveways until the snowplow has passed.

Call the City’s Snow Removal Hotline at (909) 752-2830 for general information on snow removal, berm reduction, and current snow conditions. The hotline is accessible 24 hours a day.

The Public Works Department appreciates your compliance with these guidelines.
Snow Poles

Snow Poles

The City of Big Bear Lake offers a Berm Reduction Program for City residents with driveways delineated with City supplied snow poles. City residents may obtain snow poles from the Engineering counter at the Civic Center. The installation of snow poles is the responsibility of the residents. We regret that the Public Works Department is unable to personally assist in pole installation. If you cannot do the installation yourself, any local handyman service, landscaper, or light contractor should be able to provide installation for a nominal fee.

Place snow poles two feet off the street pavement, one on each side of the driveway. Where there are curbs and drainage channels, place the poles just inside the curb near the edges of the driveway. In the case of a circular drive, please pick only one driveway to place poles.

Manufacturers suggested in-ground installation method:
• Dig a hole in the ground 12 inches deep and 2 inches wide.
• Place a 12-inch length of 1½ inch diameter PVC pipe, metal pipe, or conduit pipe into the ground so that the top of the pipe barely extends above ground level
• Backfill against pipe, thoroughly compacting the soil, and insert the snow pole into the pipe
• Snow pole should extend four to five feet above the ground

Alternate installation methods:
• Poles may be strapped securely to any existing snow poles, provided they are at the recommended locations. They need to be clearly visible from the street.
• If you have fence corner-posts at the recommended locations, poles may be affixed to them. Again, they need to be clearly visible from the street.
Property Improvements Near Roadways

Property Improvements Near Roadways

Our snow plow operators make every effort to avoid improvements within public rights-of-way. Unfortunately, sprinkler systems, fences, block walls, landscaping, and other improvements are not always visible as snow accumulates. Plowing usually occurs before daylight so visibility is limited. We recommend the placement of tall (6 ’x 2” x 2”) red stakes a minimum of 3’ from the street edge to reduce the likelihood of damage.

In the unlikely event of damage to personal property, contact Risk Management at (909) 866-5831 for assistance.

Declaration of Snow Conditions

Declaration of Snow Conditions

Municipal Code Section 10.12.040 reads: “Snow conditions may be declared by the City Manager or his appointee whenever there is one inch of snow or ice on any part of the paved portion of any street, and a buildup of snow or ice is expected to continue to a point where the snow level will exceed six inches. Snow conditions exist and the provisions of this chapter shall apply and shall remain in effect until the City Manager or his appointee declares a cessation of snow conditions. Whenever possible, the City Manager or his appointee shall give notice of such snow conditions by press, radio or television, which news media shall be requested to cooperate with city officials in the giving of such notice”. (Ordinance 96-274 (part), 1996; Ordinance 93-237 § 1 (part), 1993)


(909) 752-2830
(909) 752-2830
(909) 866-0100
(909) 866-7566
(909) 866-6501
(909) 866-4678
(877) 860-6020
(909) 866-5050
(909) 383-4631