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What to do with your car when it snows

Last updated: 10/12/16

What to do with your car when it snows

When you have a car in Boston, you need to be aware of what to do before, during, and after a snow snowstorm.


After we announce a snow emergency, we need to keep main roads clear for plows and emergency vehicles. If you’re parked on one of these main roads during a snow emergency, we will ticket and tow your car.

How do you know if you can’t park on a street during a snow emergency? Check the signs posted on the street.

View our parking restrictions map

Still have questions? Contact:
1 City Hall Square
Boston, MA 02201
United States

Discounted garages

Some garages offer discounts to Boston residents with a resident parking sticker. Discounted parking starts two hours before we declare a snow emergency, and ends two hours after we lift the emergency.

Our snow emergency parking page has a list of garages, by neighborhood, that offer discounted parking.

Space savers

Did you use a trash can, cone, or some other object to save your parking space on the street after a snowstorm? You must remove it 48 hours after we end a snow emergency.

Please keep in mind, space savers are banned in the South End.

If there's snow on the streets

Please park at least 20 feet away from intersections and no more than one foot from the curb. This helps keep the streets open for plows and emergency vehicles. Don’t use your vehicle to block:

  • sidewalks
  • fire hydrants
  • ramps
  • driveways, or
  • the street.

For your safety, make sure to clear all snow at least one foot around your muffler before starting your engine. Blocked mufflers can cause carbon monoxide poisoning.

Winter driving tips

  • Be extra careful driving during and after snowfall. Don't drive during severe storms or during snow emergencies.
  • When snowbanks are high, take an extra moment to check for pedestrians and oncoming cars. Be especially careful near school bus stops.
  • Treat traffic lights that aren’t working as stop signs and stay cautious at intersections.