Preparing for the coming winter

Snow in OberurselLast winter many towns in Germany were criticised for not doing enough to prepare for the hard winter months. In fact, when I think about it, the last TWO winters have been very cold and with lots of snow here, and in some cases I had the feeling that the side roads were not being gritted or cleared. There were days when it was almost impossible to get off my parking space and I resorted to taking the bus into town to get to my appointments.

Now Oberursel, at least, is confident that it is well prepared for the 2011/2012 winter, and the new winter service came into force last Monday. At the same time, the mayor has made a point of reminding the residents that they have snow-clearing responsibilities as well! [Read more…]

Dieser Weg wird nicht geräumt

Another sign, seen at the start of a path in Horb a.N., warning that the path will be neither cleared nor will salt or grit be strewn on it if there is snow or ice on the ground.  Use it at your own risk!

Dieser Weg wird bei Schnee und Eisglätte weder geräumt noch bestreut.  Benutzung auf eigene Gefahr.

Kein Winterdienst

Residents in Germany are responsible for clearing the snow on the paths around their properties.  Not only do they have to clear them first thing in the morning, they have to keep them clear throughout the day.  Many people hire companies to do this for them, rather than risk an insurance claim if someone slips on the path and injures themself.

Similarly, if the gound adjoining the path belongs to the town, eg. if there is a school on it, then it is the town who is responsible for clearing the snow.

But if the path does not run next to a road, there is a simple way to avoid the snow-clearing duty: put up a sign…

Achtung! kein Winterdienst  Wege beschädigt  Betreten auf eigene Gefahr

Betreten auf eigene Gefahr – use this path at your own risk!

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