Snow and Ice Control in the City

November 24, 2015

Our Role as a City:

During snow and ice conditions, the City of Courtenay’s Public Works Department is prepared and ready to respond 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Street Clearing:

We clear in order of priority:

  • Arterial roads, emergency services facilities and bus routes 
  • Collector roads, steep hills, school zones and downtown core commercial area
  • Local roads, cul-de-sacs and lanes. 

Sidewalk Clearing:

We clear in order of priority:

  • Downtown core within 3rd Street, Cliffe Avenue, 8th Street and Fitzgerald Avenue.
  • Arterial roads then collector roads.
  • Sidewalks adjacent to emergency and municipal facilities, bus stops and schools.

Your Role as a Resident or Business:

Residents and businesses play an important role during periods of snow and icy weather.

  • Clear the way. Businesses are required to remove accumulated snow from downtown sidewalks bordering the property by 12:00 noon. 
  • Reduce hazards. Do not shovel snow from sidewalks or driveways onto the roads as this creates a traffic hazard and interferes with drainage of melting snow.
  • Help us by clearing snow from storm drains and fire hydrants fronting your property. This will help drainage of melting snow and will ensure quick access to a hydrant in case of a fire.
  • Be a good neighbour. Clearing snow and ice from sidewalks can be a difficult task for our senior residents, or those with limited mobility. Please lend a helping hand to neighbours that may need assistance clearing snow and ice from driveways and sidewalks.   

Our Role as a Community:

 Get in the know about snow by learning some smart tips to help get you through the winter season safely.

  • Stay informed about the latest weather warnings and forecasts.
  • Keep a shovel and bag of salt or sodium chloride handy for clearing your sidewalks and driveways of ice and snow.
  • Do not use warm or hot water to clear areas of snow or ice.
  • When shovelling snow, pile snow on your property — not on the sidewalk or street.
  • Do not let children play in snow piles or roadside snow banks.
  • Check on neighbours that may be in need of assistance.
  • Take transit instead of driving.    

Snowplow Safety:

Snowplowing is a demanding job, and City crews work around the clock. Snow clearing equipment requires a wide berth and cannot be maneuvered as easily as a family vehicle. Here’s how you can help:

  • Limit your travel unless absolutely necessary during severe weather.
  • When traveling on the road, give the operators plenty of space — at least 10 metres. Salt, rocks and other debris can fly, decreasing visibility and posing a safety risk. Tailgating is never a good idea, but it’s especially dangerous when following heavy equipment.
  • Do not pass a snow plow. In addition to the risks listed above, the plow blades may be obscured by the snow it’s throwing.
  • Pedestrians, please stay alert when crossing the street and make eye contact with the equipment operators before proceeding.
  • Remove parked vehicles from streets wherever possible until plowing has been completed.
  • To ensure routes are clear for emergency vehicles, vehicle traffic and snow removal operations, vehicles may be towed when required.
  • For everyone’s safety, emergency vehicles have priority within the City.