The City of Chilliwack’s Operations department is gearing up for winter.
For 2019, the works yard will have 5,000 tonnes of salt ready to go in preparation for the season ahead.
Road salt is used in brine solution, and mixed with sand, and applied to Chilliwack roads in advance of snowy weather.
If temperatures dip below zero, out come the brine trucks to cover most roads, particularly the hillsides. The brine soaks into the asphalt showing up on the streets as faint, white stripes. This prevents ice from bonding to the road surface, making for safer road conditions.
This type of anti-icing is done while the weather is still dry, using trucks carrying tanks to spray the brine onto the pavement.
The Progress asked Operations management if there were any changes in store for Chilliwack in 2019-20, aside from the new 2019-20 requirement for winter-rated tires (M+S or snowtires) on the hillsides during a snow or ice event.
Is there any new snow-clearing equipment on the horizon?
This season, Operations has added one new medium-duty sander and plow to the fleet.
Any changes to the snow removal road priorities coming into force this year?
This year, staff have identified 26 roads to receive an increase in service level priority. These changes will improve overall service to residential areas, increase efficiency and align snow-clearing efforts with public transit routes.
What is the inventory of plows and sand/brining equipment?
The Operations’ fleet includes 12 heavy-duty sander/plow trucks, 12 medium-duty sander/plow trucks, and three brine application trucks, in addition to loaders, backhoes, tractors and graders.
What about sidewalks?
The City clears sidewalks outside civic properties, bus stops and the Yale/Vedder corridor as needed. Like most municipalities in the Lower Mainland, property owners are required to clear the sidewalk adjacent to their property by noon the day following a snowfall. We would encourage those who are able to consider adopting the sidewalk of a senior or person with limited mobility to help keep pedestrians safe.