How Safe Is Your Snow Removal?

By Denise Owens

The snow was coming down so pretty and white and quickly my yard became covered. After snowing for hours, it was then time to clean up the pretty white stuff.

So I started shoveling my walkway to make it safer walking to and from the house. After shoveling for awhile, I decided there’s no way I could shovel my driveway. Although it wasn’t a foot of snow, it was just enough to make it difficult for me to drive in my driveway. So I decided to have my driveway cleared. I looked in the phonebook. Surprisingly, no, the Internet has not changed my old habit of using a phone book to find a company for snow removal.

I called several companies and unfortunately a lot of them were booked for the day. But I looked out of my window and noticed that one of my neighbors had a person come out and clear their driveway. So I walked over to ask if he could do the same for me. He agreed to come over to clear my driveway. He cleared my driveway with his truck and applied salt.

Later my neighbor came over and asked what was applied to our driveways. I guessed it was salt, and he asked whether I was sure, so I asked him why’d he ask that. He said it has a color to it, so I then went out to see, and it did have a color to it. It must have been some type of chemical. I had no way of finding out what was used because this guy that cleared my driveway was just going door to door. So my neighbor then said we must be careful what’s being used because we have animals and plus it ruins your driveway and the environment. So please make sure you know what’s being used when having your snow removed.

What do you use to remove your snow? Is it environmentally safe?

About the author: Denise Owens has worked with the Environmental Protection Agency for over 25 years.

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.