VERNON - City of Vernon crews are finally moving onto residential streets after more than 24 hours of continuous snowfall.
According to city communications coordinator Tanya Laing Gahr crews have plowed and sanded all main roads and are now shifting to side streets. The snowstorm dumped over 35 cm of snow on roadways.
Starting late Tuesday night, crews will start removing snow from the downtown core, 32 Street, 27 Street and 48 Avenue. The snow removal process will run between 12 a.m. to 7 a.m. and will be conducted over Tuesday and Wednesday nights.
“Residents can assist with the snow plowing process in their neighborhoods by removing vehicles from roadways until plowing and sanding has been completed,” Laing Gahr said.
With warming temperatures this week, road crews are also concerned with melting snow could create hazards. City utilities manager Barry Baker said as temperatures rise, the snow will either turn to liquid and find its way down storm drains, or depending on the time of day, freeze and turn to ice.
“Our crews will be busy attempting to have roadways clear and catch basins exposed so that the water is able to enter into the storm system,” Baker said.
Although most city streets will have been plowed and sanded by Wednesday morning, drivers should be aware that melting snow and freezing rain could cause icy sections. Residents can help keep streets safe for pedestrians by shovelling snow and removing ice from the sidewalks and foot paths bordering your property. When shovelling sidewalks, residents are asked to keep fire hydrants clear of piled snow and avoid piling snow on roads, storm drains or bus pickup/drop-off areas.
Pedestrians should be prepared for all sidewalk conditions and wear appropriate footwear and/or ice cleats. City of Vernon yellow grit boxes are available in high-traffic pedestrian areas near the Schubert Centre so residents can help keep sidewalks safe. The city is reminding property owners that they are responsible for ensuring proper drainage of melt water away from their homes.
City crews are responsible for plowing and sanding approximately 584 lane kilometres, using 11 designated plow vehicles, two graders, a loader, and three bobcats. Contractor forces are also being deployed.
During the snow storm, crews focused on roads identified as Priority 1: arterials, collectors, bus routes and school zones. Priority 2 roads (all roads not identified as Priority 1 except lanes and cul-de-sacs) and Priority 3 (lanes and cul-de-sacs) will be plowed and sanded now that the snowstorm has passed. Along with these roads, the City also clears sidewalks along 27 Street, 32 Street, Highway 6 and all paved linear trails.
Most city buses are running, with the following route changes:
Route #4: Not operating
Route #1: Not servicing Sarsons Road yet due to icy sections
Route #61: Not servicing Buchanan Road
Route #60: Not servicing Greenhow Road until plowing is complete
Route #7: May be some delays due to one-lane traffic along Heritage Drive
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—This story was edited at 12:40 p.m. Jan. 6 to include an upade from the City of Vernon.