LEWISTON — Think scattered sand — not piles — if you expect the city’s street-sweeping vehicles to do a good job cleaning your road, according to city officials.

Public Works Director Dave Jones said his crews started their annual street-sweeping project this week.

“We get a lot of people that want to clean up their own yards and get the sand off their grass,” Jones said. “Some even sweep up part of the street in front of their house and put it into a nice, neat pile. That really doesn’t help us any.”

Jones said the city’s street sweepers tends to choke on big piles of sand.

“We’d rather they just leave it spread out evenly,” Jones said. “When the sweeper comes along, it can’t pick up those big piles. But if it’s even, we do a much better job.”

Lewiston crews began sweeping streets Monday, focusing first on the city’s major collectors and travel arteries. They’ll move on to smaller side streets and neighborhoods in the coming weeks.

In Auburn, the Public Works department released its street-sweeping schedule online. Crews should begin along the busiest downtown streets Monday.

Sweeping operations will continue into June.

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