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Frequently Asked Questions

Q.

How do I get a new driveway?

A.

Please contact our office at (641) 774-4013 x6.

Q.

How do I get dust control by my property?

A.

Contact our office at (641) 774-4013 x6 for approved supplier names and numbers and our dust control policy and permit application.

Q.

Do I have to own the property where I am placing dust control?

A.

You do not have to own the property. But you do need to notify the property owner of the location where dust control is being placed.

Q.

Where do I get the flags to mark my dust control?

A.

Flags are supplied by your dust control provider or can be obtained in the Engineering & Secondary Roads office in the basement of the courthouse. You are responsible for keeping the flags visible so the road grader does not grade your dust control.

Q.

Why does it take so long to clear gravel roads when it snows?

A.

Restoring access on gravel roads is a slow process since motor graders are not built for speed, and a typical route covers between 60 and 80 miles (or 120 and 160 lane miles) of roads that need to be cleared. If windy conditions result in having to use the V-plows to get through snow drifts, even slower progress will be made. Sometimes after a severe storm, it is not possible to reach all homes until the second or third day. Continued windy conditions can result in a road blowing shut after it is opened. Home owners are encouraged to plan accordingly for the winter season.

Q.

Why does my driveway keep getting plowed shut?

A.

Unfortunately, this is due to the continuous operation of the plow. It is necessary for the operator to push snow without stopping in order to efficiently remove the snow and complete the route in a timely manner. If we pause to clear each driveway, both momentum and time are lost. Generally, the snow is pushed to the south and east so that the removed snow windrow will not act as a snow fence and cause drifting across the roadway with the prevailing northerly and westerly winds.

Q.

The plow knocked down my mailbox. Will the County replace it?

A.

During wet snows, the plowing operations will often cast snow across the shoulder, which can break the weaker mailbox supports. Contact the Engineering & Secondary Roads office at (641) 774-4013 x6 to report damage. Repairs or replacements will be made in a timely manner if the damage is the fault of the county. 

Q.

I've seen plow trucks on the road that sometimes aren't spreading salt. Why don't they since they're there anyway?

A.

Salt does not melt ice, but it does lower the freezing temperature of water. This works down to a temperature of approximately 20 degrees. At a critical temperature of or about 20 degrees, applying salt to roads packed with snow or ice may create worse problems by causing the snow or ice to "glaze" or form a slick, shiny surface. Also, during windy storms, snow will often blow off a bare road, whereas salt will sometimes cause the snow to begin to stick. We monitor the forecast and current temperatures to determine the most efficient use of our salt.

Q.

How can I contact the Engineering & Secondary Roads department?

A.

You can reach us at (641) 774-4013 x6 during business hours of Monday through Friday between 7:00 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. The office is closed on county holidays.

Q.

Who do I contact in case of an emergency?

A.

Emergencies (where loss of life is probable, or where a serious injury has occurred, or where extensive loss of property is imminent) should be reported to the 911 dispatcher.

Map · Lucas County Engineering & Secondary Roads

916 Braden Ave · Chariton, IA 50049