If you're tight on time with a snowstorm on the way, here are seven ways that our SeeClickFix 311 and citizen request management solution can support you and your citizens.
Request types (not the norm) – Add a request type specific to snow issues, and think outside the typical “plowing” uses. Heavy snow on tree limbs can block roadways or damage power lines. Many residents won’t know exactly who to call in this situation, and may wait for the next passerby to report it. We’ve seen clients name these request types “Downed Power Line,” “Live Power Line,” and “Downed Tree Limb.”
Quick canned messages – During a storm of any kind, you can expect an influx of citizen inquiries, questions, and requests. Prepare in advance by creating a set of prepared messages that you can use to acknowledge requests in seconds. Need some ideas? Here's an example:
“The City of X is working to quickly resolve requests related to our current snowstorm, and expects to respond to all tickets within 6 hours of the storm’s completion. If your request is a true emergency, please call 911.”
An updated message will show residents that it wasn’t an automatic reply, and assure them of their leaders' current priorities.
CC Your Snow Contractors – If your administration contracts snow removal services, consider adding their email as a “CC” (In SeeClickFix terms: Email to Route Requests) so they are alerted of the request immediately, even if they don’t use the SeeClickFix system.
Of course––at your discretion, you are welcome to add the contractors directly to your system as staff users.
Use Notices – As an example, New Haven, CT has used the Notice above during past storms. Residents have found this information to be very helpful, especially in a concise format. Simple additions of a photo or emoji can be eye-catching to a resident.
- What does New Haven’s message usually state? Information on parking bans (help out the City by moving your vehicles), plow routes, etc.
- Other suggestions to add to your Notice: Information on warming center locations and hours (best to include COVID-19 mandates), information on emergency snow routes, projected information on the timing of the storm, etc.
311 NOT 911 – SeeClickFix should be used for 311 issues, not 911 emergencies. Consider adding this statement to your app using a Banner Message (navigate here by clicking into Mobile App Branding through your Organization settings).
Power Outages – If there’s a power outage, smartphones (as long as they are charged) are usually still functional with cell service. You may consider adding a request type that allows the resident to communicate an outage. Even if your organization does not manage the region’s power, you’ll be able to provide an organized list of outages (with time stamps) to the correct agency.
Duplication Information on Your Website – You may feel like you already have all the information on snowstorm resources your citizens may need on your website. Create a mobile button linking to the existing information on your website within seconds. Here’s how.