PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Officials in Philadelphia say they are actively enforcing the city’s updated shoveling law and have written thousands of tickets to prove it. The law was strengthened this year, requiring property owners to shovel a three-foot-wide path on sidewalks within six hours of the end of a snowstorm. Previously, owners only had to shovel a path 30 inches wide.
Apparently, not everyone heard the news because so far this winter, Streets Department officers have written 3,013 citations for properties violating the law. Those citations cost owners $50 each.
Through all of last winter, for comparison, the city handed out 5,946 shoveling citations.
It’s hard to say how well the law works because Eyewitness News found plenty of unshoveled sidewalks in several city neighborhoods Monday. That’s nearly two weeks since the city last saw a substantial snowfall.
“We were appalled,” said Annalisa Defeo in South Philadelphia. “We took the kids out for a walk today, and there were some streets we could not walk down.”
“Pushing a stroller through is the problem,” echoed Maria McCabe in Center City.
A lot of the unshoveled sidewalks appear to be near vacant homes or homes under construction. Eyewitness News did spot a snow-covered sidewalk near an active parking lot at 19th and Buttonwood Streets, however.
Rashida Barnes has to walk on that sidewalk everyday.
“I just think that it’s horrible,” she said. “It’s been like this for a couple of weeks now. It’s ridiculous.”
Watch Ben Simmoneau’s Report
Reported by Ben Simmoneau, CBS 3