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Dunn Co. road super to visit residents pushing snow in road

MANNING -- Dunn County residents who have created obstacles in county right-of-ways with snow will soon get a visit from County Road Superintendent Mike Zimmerman.

The Dunn County Commission approved the effort after Zimmerman told commissioners at Wednesday's regular meeting in the Dunn County Courthouse here that a landowner who once requested and was denied a speed bump to slow traffic near his home created his own out of snow.

"One of our guys went out there and took it off but someone could have went airborne I guess," Zimmerman said.

Zimmerman said each county handles such situations differently and asked the commissioners for guidance.

"If there are people pushing snow across the roads and making hazards in the county right-of-ways, how do you address that?" he said.

Commissioner Glenn Eckelberg suggested Zimmerman explain to landowners the issue the county has with creating hazards on the roads.

But Commissioner Reinhard Hauck said he wasn't sure if the commission could actually combat people piling snow on the roads and creating a hazard by establishing a policy.

"I think you need to work with landowners on an individual basis," he said. "I don't see how you can set some type of policy."

Zimmerman said he has heard of counties sending certified letters to landowners who create the hazards, asking them not to do it.

He said if the landowner continues to create hazards on the road after they receive a letter, the counties have an option to fine the landowner or it would go out at take the hazard out and bill the landowner for the cleanup.

In cases where the bill was not paid, Zimmerman said there might be the possibility to include the fee in the landowner's tax bill.

He also suggested talking with Dunn County State's Attorney Ross Sundeen to see if it is a liability for the county if snow is pushed out of yards and piled up on the shoulder on the opposite side of the county road, creating a possible hazard for drivers.

"It's an obstruction within our right-of-way," Zimmerman said. "If someone drives off the road and hits that, we could be responsible because we're supposed to try and keep that out of the roads."