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City issues heavy snowfall declaration

Please be advised that due to ongoing heavy snowfall, the City of Prince George is issuing a heavy snowfall declaration. This declaration is to notify residents that snow and ice control crews may need extra time to clear the streets. Travellers are asked to be patient, drive to conditions, and to plan their routes and travel times accordingly.

Snow accumulations received in the last 24 hours have ranged from 22cm to 30cm in various regions of the city.​ The city’s Snow and Ice Control Policy, approved by council in 2019, includes a new provision that the city can issue a heavy snowfall declaration when Prince George receives at least 20cm or more in a 24-hour period.

A heavy snowfall declaration notifies residents that crews will likely take longer than usual to clear the streets. Correspondingly, heavy snowfall declarations extend completion time for crews by 24 hours when the 20cm heavy snowfall threshold is reached. An additional 24 hours is added for every eight centimetres of snow the city receives beyond this threshold.

Information about Snow Removal Operations can be found at www.princegeorge.ca/snow.

“As residents can see, Prince George received a lot of snow in the previous 24 hours and the city is encouraging everyone to use extra caution when driving, or to consider delaying travel if possible until conditions on the roads improve,” said Mayor Lyn Hall. “When driving, please use extra care and be vigilant, particularly when around snow and ice control crews and equipment. Also, consider checking on any neighbours who may need some assistance. As always, council wishes to thank all of the snow removal crews for their hard work. Stay safe everybody.” 

Crews have been working in day and night shifts since yesterday morning to clear priority routes. Operations will continue through the weekend. Priority Three routes, including roads in residential areas, will be cleared once Priority One and Priority Two routes have been completed.​

“The Prince George RCMP are asking the general public to use extra caution when driving due to the significant snow fall and slippery winter conditions,” says S/Sgt. Kent MacNeill of the Prince George RCMP. “The RCMP encourage drivers to take extra time to get to their destination and give other drivers some extra room.  Also, drivers should take extra time to make sure your vehicle is thoroughly cleared of ice and snow to ensure proper visibility.”   

Priority routes

The City of Prince George’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. Council’s Snow and Ice Control Bylaw categorizes the city’s 735km of roads and 189km 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.

Parking restrictions

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 7:00am downtown.
  • On-street parking is prohibited from 10:00pm to 7:00am on Priority One roads and hills, the Hospital District, and a number of other designated roads.
  • On-street parking is prohibited from 8:00am to 6:00pm in residential areas. Parking on the side of the street with odd house numbers is permitted from 6:00pm to 8:00am unless otherwise posted.
  • Illegally parked vehicles are subject to a $50 ticket per offence and/or may be towed.

Note: plowing around parked vehicles can slow down operations and create hazards for other vehicles by creating windrows in the street.

Further information about City snow and ice control operations can be found on the City website at www.princegeorge.ca/snow. Residents can also view an online video for an overview of these operations.

Citizens can keep current on information about snow clearing and other road operations by subscribing to the City’s News and Events service (select the “Roads” category).

The City of Prince George thanks residents for following its winter parking restrictions and for driving cautiously when around road crews and equipment.

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