NP police tough on parking ban during snowstorm

NP police tough on parking ban during snowstorm

North Providence public safety workers respond to an accident in the area of Smithfield Road during last Thursday’s snowstorm. (Breeze photos by Kevin Aherne)

NORTH PROVIDENCE – Officers from the North Providence Police Department issued 16 tickets and had 19 vehicles towed during the first major snowstorm of the winter season last week, continuing a tough approach on parking that began last winter.

Chief of Police David Tikoian said owners of an additional 16 vehicles that were in violation of a parking ban were successfully contacted to move their vehicles from the roadway.

The 19 vehicles towed amounted to nearly double the 10 cars towed in a storm a year ago, the first storm after Mayor Charles Lombardi announced that residents who don’t remove their cars during parking bans would no longer get second chances.

Police responded to a total of 126 calls for service from midnight last Thursday to midnight Friday, and investigated 12 accidents during that 24-hour period.

Police used a variety of channels to inform the public about the parking ban beginning at 1 a.m. on Thursday.

“This initiative proved effective (in) minimizing the number of vehicles towed, resulting in efficient snow plowing operations for our Department of Public Works,” said Tikoian.

Police took one report for the theft of a snow blower. They arrested one person following a hit-and-run accident investigation on a Superior Court bench warrant for failure to appear for cost review on a domestic violence charge. That person was processed and transported to the Adult Correctional Institutions in Cranston.

During last Thursday’s storm, where snow piled up to some 15 inches across town, Lombardi urged local residents to remain at home.

“Please stay off the roadways, unless it’s a strict emergency,” said the mayor. “However, if it is an emergency, our police and fire departments are at the ready to aid all town residents. “

North Providence Town Hall was closed for the day last Thursday, but many town employees remained hard at work during the winter storm, attempting to clear the roads, update citizens, and provide safety and rescue services.

“We have approximately 37 plows out there at the moment,” said Lombardi, while driving around town to survey the storm’s impact and monitor the status of snow removal efforts.

In addition to the plowing efforts by the DPW, the town’s Emergency Operations Center at police and fire headquarters on Mineral Spring Avenue was used by safety personnel to monitor storm conditions and address emergency situations as they happened.

Town employees tried to work with residents to get them to remove their cars if possible, but if vehicle owners weren’t around, they were given tickets instead of warnings.

“We try to give residents an opportunity to move their cars,” said Chief of Staff Dick Fossa. “However, if they aren’t moved, the cars have to be towed so that we can clear the snow, and make the roads passable for emergency crews.”

Temperatures plummeted into the single digits over the weekend, but snow melting is expected this week, as temperatures rise above freezing. North Providence and other area communities largely escaped the power outages that had been predicted.

Lombardi said during the storm that he hoped temperatures stayed cold, in the upper 20s, because warmer air and wetter snow would have elevated the risk of power outages.

According to the DPW workers, a majority of calls received from town residents were related to the storm’s disruption of the trash collection schedule. Last Wednesday and Thursday’s pickup was put off to last Friday, and Friday’s pickup was postponed to Saturday.

– Managing Editor Ethan Shorey contributed to this story.

Mayor Charles Lombardi stops to talk with Jim Grimes, head of the DPW’s Maintenance Division, about cleanup efforts during the storm.


Our street is plowed once sown the middle of the road. Six feet from the curb. What about the school bus stops?? Are the kids going to wait in the street. Typical NP does just the minimum.

Thats NP's finest, fighting crime. Tagging and towing people's cars. Great work.

Ok, so where do we start? Year in and year out it's the same old story on snow plowing. Maybe the Mayor should take a ride east of Douglas Ave. during snow storms. Lojai Blvd., Cleveland Street, Garfield Street just to name a few. We get two passes down the center of the street leaving 4-6 feet away from the curbs. At the intersection of Lojai & Cleveland, an island is created in the center where there isn't an island. Residents go out with snow blowers to clean it up. Residents put our curb delineators so the plow drivers know where the curbs are. I don't know, but maybe they think they are Christmas decorations. Sent e-mails and pictures to DPW Acting Director and Mayor, nothing gets done. Councilman DeStefanis has tried to help, but he can't be everywhere and doesn't drive the plow trucks.
As for the parking ban, it's issued from a time to "UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE" however no one knows when it's lifted. Call the police dept. and they don't know saying they are also waiting for the decision to be made. The first storm, there was a parking ban for three days when we has three inches of snow. Plows don't come anywhere near cars parked on the street anyway.

The town, mayor, and DPW are a joke. They wanted to tow my truck because i came home to 2 feet at my driveway amd parked in the street to clean my driveway. Got threatened by the dpw guy driving the yukon or tahoe with plow. I bet the mayors street was clear

I have to strongly agree, one lane plowing is the norm in my neighborhood as well and has been for 10+ years! Miles Ave, Greenfield Ave, Standish Ave, Justice St...Too bad for all the taxes we are paying.

the Mayor was not able to privatize the DPW, I don't think we'd be having these issues if he had.