Trevor Crawley photo.

Public Works explains snow removal policy

For the Townsman

It is an annual ritual of most Canadians – the anticipation of our first blast of snowy, winter weather, and it appears Mother Nature isn’t wasting any time for Cranbrook and the rest of the East Kootenay.

Environment Canada is forecasting a winter system to hit all areas of the region by Wednesday with cold temperatures and possibly 15 to 20 cm of snow by the end of the week.

“Our snow removal crews and equipment are ready to go,” says Derrick Anderson, Director of Public Works with the City of Cranbrook. “We have great staff and a solid fleet of truck and plows, with operations ready to run around the clock during any major snow event. During these events, we follow our priority routes, so it can take us three or four days to be able to reach everyone. We ask our residents and business owners to be patient and understanding. We will be doing our very best.”

It’s also important for residents and business owners to help out by keeping streets and sidewalks clear of snow and ice. Not leaving your vehicle parked on the street during snowfalls wherever possible will also help make clearing the streets easier for City plows, along with not pushing windrows back into the street.

Keeping snow and ice removed from your nearby sidewalks and driveways is also important from an

emergency services perspective. It will allow much easier access to your property by the fire department, RCMP or paramedics should an accident or other emergency happen at home.

The city has a prioritization system for clearing streets, which are classified from A, being the top priority, to D, being at the bottom of the scale.

Streets that are ‘A’ classified include major streets, hospital zones and roads that access emergency service facilities, which are cleared first.

‘B’ class roads include collector streets, the central business district and school zones. For ‘C’ and ‘D’ class roads, crews will tackle residential streets that have higher traffic flow and work their way down to roads that have lower traffic volumes.

Sidewalks also have a priority system, but are not cleared until the streets are taken care of first. As city crews are freed up from snow removal on roads, they can shift to select public sidewalks. Residents are responsible for clearing windrows in front of their properties.

While not technically a sidewalk, it is not City policy to clear Rotary Way during the winter.

For information about how the City prioritizes its street clearing operations, including route maps, visit the municipal website and click on ‘Snow Removal Information’ listed under City of Cranbrook Links on the homepage.

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