The snow has arrived and city crews are out clearing the roads.
According to weather forecasts the city could receive roughly 30cm of snow over the next 48 hours so there are few things the City of Prince George would like residents to know about its snow clearing efforts during that time.
For today, while temperatures are expected to remain relatively warm, priority routes will be addressed with de-icing materials. Overnight tonight, city crews will begin grading and plowing priority routes. With the forecasted snow accumulations and the estimated length of the snow event, it is likely that these routes will need to be addressed again on a subsequent nightshift. The city plows many priority one routes, such as the downtown area, 15th Avenue, the hospital area, and Fifth Avenue during the night shift in order to reduce the interference with higher daytime traffic volumes.
All available city and contracted resources will be employed starting Friday morning and continue until priority one, two, and three routes have been brought to passable condition. Residential route clearing also takes garbage collection days into consideration. The weather forecast also predicts a steep drop in temperature this weekend. Multiple factors, including temperatures, accompanying weather systems, and total snow accumulation, affect operations, timelines, and decisions about equipment deployment.
The city’s snow-clearing operations maintain roads and sidewalks in passable conditions throughout winter. During a snow event, city roads are categorized into three snow-clearing priorities, indicated by three colours on the City’s snow clearing map. A council categorizes the city’s 670km of roads and 200km of sidewalks into three snow-clearing priority routes:
- Priority One (red) roads include main arterial roads, downtown roads, priority hills, the hospital area, civic facility entrances, and priority parking lots and pathways. These routes are often cleared during the nightshift in order to reduce the interference with higher daytime traffic volumes.
- Priority Two (green) roads include bus routes that are not main arterial roads, and commercial and industrial roads.
- Priority Three (grey) roads include residential roads and lanes, and all remaining civic facility parking lots and pathways. Residential route clearing also takes garbage collection days into consideration.
Motorists are also reminded that parking restrictions are in effect from October 15 to April 15 each year to help with snow operations:
- On-street parking is prohibited from midnight to 7 a.m. downtown.
- On-street parking is prohibited from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. on priority one roads and hills, the hospital district, and a number of other designated roads.
- On-street parking is prohibited from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. in residential areas. Parking on the side of the street with odd house numbers is permitted from 6 p.m. to 8 a.m. unless otherwise posted.
- Illegally parked vehicles are subject to a $50 ticket per offence and/or may be towed.
- Plowing around parked vehicles can slow down operations and create hazards for other vehicles by creating windrows in the street.