Now that the snow is here in Western New York, many of us will spend the next several days getting rid of the snow from our driveways and sidewalks.

With that in mind, there is something you should never do while you are shoveling your driveway or sidewalks.

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You should never toss snow from your driveway or sidewalk into the street. In fact, here in New York State, it is illegal to do so. According to New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law Article 1219. The law states that:

  • You can’t put snow or dangerous things like tacks, nails, glass bottles, wire, cans, or anything else that would be likely to injure a person, animal, or vehicle on the street.

  • Anyone who deposits dangerous material in the street, whether or not it was intentional, must immediately take steps to remove it.

  • Anyone removing a wrecked vehicle from the street must also make sure any glass or other dangerous items resulting from the damaged vehicle are removed.


So for example you are shoveling out your driveway and you toss the snow into the street in front of your house. A car driving down your street hits that pile of snow and fishtails and hits another car, you could be on the hook for the damages because you placed the snow in the road.

Say you park in the street and brush off your car and leave a pile of snow where your car was, if someone slips and gets hurt you could be in trouble.

While it is not enforced a lot, you could end up being fined $150 or spend 15 days in jail.

So this weekend when you are clearing out your driveway or sidewalk, make sure to toss the snow into your yard and not the street.

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