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DES MOINES, Iowa — The Des Moines Public Works Department is preparing for winter weather that could make its way into the metro over the next several days.

The department has been testing equipment and getting ready for the full force of the winter season. The freezing rain event on Tuesday morning allowed the department to get trucks out to make sure they were ready to go when a big storm hits.

“Early winter events that are hardly any snow accumulation are a good way to exercise some of the equipment and put it out in the field and make sure everything was working like we expected to,” said Jonathan Gano, the director of Des Moines Public Works. “So happy to have a few small events.”

There is a difference in the type of responses the city has. Everything over 2 inches is treated as just a regular snow removal, the only difference is the amount of snow that would be needed to be removed. Under 2 inches the response can differ depending on the type of precipitation.

“Below 2 inches there is a whole range of response that can fall into play. Whether it is a thin glaze of ice or a dusting of snow, winter can throw a lot of different options,” said Gano.

Until the snow reaches 2 inches, the City is worried about keeping the 750 miles of roadway in Des Moines clear and safe to drive on. Once it hits that mark, it turns into snow removal mode.

With the incoming weather this weekend, Gano reminded people to make sure to take the weather into your planning for travel. He also added that driving slower allows for more control on snow covered roadways.

With any snow storm this season, Des Moines visitors and residents can track plowing progress and stay prepared for winter weather at or by following @dmdpw on Twitter and Des Moines Public Works on Facebook. Residents may also opt in to receive text alerts by texting DMSNOW to 96000.

If there are any questions about City snow removal, residents are encouraged to call the 24/7 Public Works Customer Service Center at 515-283-4950.