Snow and Ice Control

According to the City’s Snow and Ice Control Policy, City streets will be cleared after 10 cm of snow, or when lesser depths of snow are causing hazardous conditions. Roads in the City are cleared in the following order of priority:

  1. Arterial Roads
  2. Collector Roads
  3. Local Roads
  4. Cul-de-sacs
  5. Lanes

In addition, the facilities and routes are considered priorities:

  1. Emergency Services Facilities including City Hall and other municipal facilities
  2. Bus routes – Public transit
  3. Steep hills
  4. School areas

Plowing of snow will result in a windrow of snow across private driveways and business accesses. The City of Courtenay regrets this; however, we simply do not have the resources to clear these windrows from individual driveways.


You are encouraged to clear the snow from the sidewalk adjacent to your property but without depositing it onto the adjoining roads.  During snowfalls greater than 10 cm, the City will typically deploy snow clearing equipment to support efforts to clear sidewalks on streets with high pedestrian use; with first priority given to opening one side only. Sidewalk clearing priorities are as follows:

  1. Downtown core; bounded within 3rd Street, Cliffe Avenue, 8th Street and Fitzgerald Avenue
  2. Arterial roads
  3. Collector roads
  4. Paved walkways (sidewalk linkages)

Private Roads, Driveways and Accesses

Property owners or occupiers are responsible for the clearing of private roads, driveways and accesses. Please do not deposit this snow on City streets; in most cases the City of Courtenay will have little choice but to redirect it back into the area from which it came. We suggest that when shoveling out the mouth of a driveway, please deposit the snow to the side of the driveway in the direction of vehicular traffic (or to the right side when looking at the street from the driveway). This will lessen the amount of snow being deposited in the driveway during road widening.

Please do not deposit snow over the ends of drainage culverts or catch basins, since rapid warming or thawing could overload drainage facilities, causing flooding and/or possible property damage.  Please assist the City in reducing flooding problems by clearing snow and debris away from and around catch basins and culverts.

Snow plowing the City streets is a demanding job and our crews work around the clock. In order to assist snow plow operators to safely clear streets and roads we ask the public to please consider the following:

  • Limit your travel unless absolutely necessary during severe weather.
  • Snow clearing equipment requires a wide berth and cannot be maneuvered as easily as a family vehicle.
  • When traveling on the road, give the operators plenty of space. Keep a safe distance from all equipment and avoid passing.
  • Pedestrians are asked to stay alert when crossing the street and ensure eye contact with the equipment operators before proceeding.
  • Remove all parked vehicles from the streets until such time as plowing has been completed.

The City does tow vehicles when required. This is done to ensure routes are clear for emergency vehicles, vehicular traffic and snow removal operations. Please consider that for the safety of everyone, emergency vehicles have priority within the City.