December 29, 2015 - 6:00 PM
KELOWNA - This weekend’s two-day snow dump didn’t even come close to the storm that started 2015, according to the people tasked with clearing much of it out of the way.
“We didn’t activate the snow routes,” says public works manager Darryl Astofooroff, in charge of the city’s snow removal service. “We didn’t consider it serious enough.”
Last January’s storm dropped a near-record 37 centimetres of snow on the Central Okanagan over two days, clogging roads and snarling traffic.
The introduction of snow routes on Dilworth Mountain was part of the city’s response in the aftermath of the storm when parked cars blocked tractors and sanding trucks from clearing some main roadways.
Even if routine, Astofooroff says “all hands were on deck” dealing with the estimated 15 centimetres of snow that fell Saturday afternoon through to early Monday morning.
The city deployed at least forty pieces of equipment for the clean-up including 20 plowing-sanding trucks, Astofooroff adds, and other departments had crews helping clean catch basins and around bus stops.
“They aren’t all out there at the same time, there’s shifts, but everyone is working around the clock for the whole holiday season. Today we’re concentrating on cul-de-sacs.”
Astofooroff says forecasts are good for the last two days of the year. At that point, his snow removal department starts a new budget year with $1.6 million. Anything left over from this year goes back into snow removal reserves.
“This was supposed to be a monster El Nino year. So much for that,” he says.
To contact a reporter for this story, email John McDonald at email@example.com or call 250-808-0143. To contact the editor, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 250-718-2724.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015