Snow clearing efforts in the West Kootenays.

City sticking to snow plow budget

Despite heavy snowfall last week, the City of Rossland is sticking to its snow plow budget.

Despite heavy snowfall last week, the City of Rossland is sticking to its snow plow budget.

Darrin Albo, manager of public works, estimates the city has spent $110,000 so far, which represents about 23 per cent of the city’s total $488,000 snow plow budget for 2017.

“We’re actually a little bit under budget,” says Albo.

In terms of snowfall, he says it’s been about average for Rossland this year, though city workers did rack up some overtime last week.

“We had to go out on overtime for one of the days,” says Albo. “We plowed on a Sunday, which we try to avoid, but with the amount of snow that we got, we went out and did that because of the forecast that was coming.”

Between Saturday, Feb. 4 and Friday, Red Mountain Resort reported a total snowfall of 68 cm — the total snowfall for the month so far. Twenty centimeters of that fell on the Saturday, and another 20 cm fell on the Monday.

With all the snow accumulating, residents should know how to recognize when there’s a heavy snowload on their roofs. Watch for signs of stress — “unusual sounds from the roof or supporting walls, visible movement of walls or sagging of ceiling and cracking of drywall or plaster,” or door jams or water leaks that show up after a large snow fall. If the snowload is too heavy, then the National Research Council of Canada advises hiring a “qualified and insured” contractor to clear your roof for you.

Albo says there are contractors in town who can clear snow off roofs, but also stresses that they should be insured. “[Otherwise] if somebody falls off or gets hurt, of course you’re liable,” he says.

Albo would also appreciate people moving their vehicles when the city’s plows are out.

“It’s always appreciated that people move their vehicles every 24 hours, and that when they see our grader and blower in their area, it’s nice if they move their vehicles …, when they’re home of course,” he says.

Albo also encourages people that have them to use their driveways, rather than parking on the street.