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Clearing city roads has been a challenge this season

An uncleared sidewalk in east Belleville. Photo by Suzanne Coolen

An uncleared sidewalk in east Belleville. Photo by Suzanne Coolen

By Suzanne Coolen [1]

BELLEVILLE – The city has been working around the clock to keep up with clearing snow off the streets but says residents need to be co-operative.

“Residents need to do their part and not park on city streets overnight, to make it easier for plows to get through” said Pat McNulty, the city’s manager of transportation.

Parking is prohibited on the street between 1 a.m. and 6 a.m. until April 14. The fine for doing so is $75.

McNulty said the snow-removal crews are working rotating 12-hour shifts around the clock and are asking residents to be patient.

“My staff has worked pretty much non-stop since Christmas with the exception of a few needed days off,” he said.

“We plow the primary roads first: arterial and collectors and the bus routes. The secondary roads are next. But if we get significant snow we go back to the primary roads.”

Asked about keeping sidewalks clear, McNulty said that has been a problem this year. “First the ice storm and now with the banks so high we have had to use blowers, which is hard to get down to the bare pavement.”

McNulty has said that the city is already over its operating budget [2]for snow clearing for the season, but that he is not sure by how much. It will affect the budget for next year, but that is something that will have to be dealt with as it comes, he said: “We have no choice. The snow has to be removed.”

In a poll by QNet News asking about people’s satisfaction with snow removal in the city, 65 per cent of respondents said they feel improvements are needed. The other 35 per cent said hey think the city is doing the best it can.


Related Links
There’s lots more winter still ahead, Environment Canada says [3]
Winter weather puts snow removal over budget [2]