Section 19. A town shall have police jurisdiction over all state highways within its limits. It shall forthwith give written notice to the department or its employees of any defect or want of repair in such highways; but it may make necessary temporary repairs of a state highway without the approval of the department.

The department shall at the expense of the commonwealth keep such state highways or parts thereof as it may select sufficiently clear of snow and ice to be reasonably safe for travel; and the town in which any such state highway or part thereof lies shall forthwith give written notice to the department or its employees of any failure to keep such highway or part thereof clear of ice and snow as aforesaid.