Below are some simple steps to help protect your property and ensure snow clearing goes as safely and smoothly as possible this winter season.
- Remove planters, lawn decorations and any other portable objects near the sidewalk before the winter.
- When bad weather is in the forecast, safely store items that may still be used during the winter (e.g. sports equipment).
- Mark any permanent structures or objects with a reflector that will be visible above the snow. This helps crews identify obstacles.
- Trim any tree branches and shrubs that originate from your property. These can obstruct access and visibility for snow-clearing equipment.
- Never park on the sidewalk and when parked in a driveway, make sure your vehicle isn't hanging over into the right-of-way. These vehicles are dangerous obstacles for crews and prevent proper clearing of sidewalks.
In addition to the tips above, business owners should refrain from placing sandwich boards and other portable signs on the sidewalk during the winter months. These are obstacles for clearing equipment and can significantly hamper operations.
Never clear snow from your property onto the street or sidewalk.
It is against By-Law S-300 to throw or pile snow in the street or on the sidewalk. This is a serious problem that can cause safety issues for pedestrians and other users as it complicates clearing for crews. When this happens, crews are often forced to double back, delaying service on the rest of their routes.
Property owners must ensure the snow they clear is piled on their own property. The municipality has enhanced enforcement in place to address non-compliance with the By-Law:
- If a property owner is found to be non-compliant, municipal staff will affix an Order at their civic address.
- The 24-hour Order to Remove Snow and Ice from the Right of Way indicates that a failure to comply will result in the municipality removing the snow and ice. The cost of the removal will constitute a lien against the property and be collected in the same manner as property taxes.
- Violations of By-law S-300 may also result in a summary offense ticket of no less than $100.00.
Residents or businesses can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 311 to report violations.
The overnight winter parking ban is in effect every year from Dec. 15 until Mar. 31; however, it is only enforced during declared weather events and clearing operations. When the ban is enforced, it restricts any on-street parking between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. Vehicles in violation of the ban will be ticketed and/or towed.
Remember to stay informed about the status of the parking ban and please think before you park.
Winter safety tips
- If possible, don’t drive during a storm. It’s much safer to stay at home and wait until conditions improve.
- During a storm, major arterial routes are cleared first and salted more frequently than residential side streets and sidewalks.
- Watch for ice, especially on bridges, overpasses and in shaded areas of the roadway and sidewalks.
- Even if roads appear to be salted, remember that salt becomes much less effective in melting snow at temperatures below -10 degrees Celsius.
- Adjust your speed. Wet roads can freeze even if the air temperature is above zero.
- Follow at a safe distance. It can take up to 12 times longer to stop on snow and ice than on dry pavement.
- Never pass a plow when it is clearing snow from the road. Whiteout conditions are often created in the front of plows which reduces visibility and increases the chance of an accident.
- Keep your vehicle in top working order.
- Have a winter survival kit in your vehicle.
- Never plow or shovel snow from your driveway onto the street or sidewalk. This can cause problems for pedestrians, particularly those with mobility issues.
- Children should not play in the snow along the side of the road or anywhere a snow plow is likely to operate.