Slippery conditions have Edmonton crews working 24/7; report ice to 311

Slippery conditions have Edmonton crews working 24/7; report ice to 311

December 14, 2018

After a number of freeze/thaw cycles, conditions are slick in Edmonton.

“We have seen a substantial amount of rain this year,” said Paul Marinkovich, managing supervisor for Infrastructure Operations. “I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s the worse [but] there are very slippery conditions out there and I encourage anyone who sees these unsafe conditions to report them to 311.”

City crews are working around the clock to deal with icy conditions but need the public’s help identifying slippery spots in neighbourhoods.

“The past several days, the city of Edmonton has received several freezing rain events, including a substantial freeze/thaw cycle,” Marinkovich said.

“We have had units out around the clock addressing these conditions throughout our mobility network, including in our residential areas, which we are currently addressing on a complaint basis.”

The mobility network refers to anything that helps citizens move: roads, sidewalks, multi-use trials, bike lanes and bus stops.

City workers are trained to remove snow, ice and windrows from bus stops, crosswalks and any curb crossings. Crews are also tackling icy spots by sanding and chipping sidewalks.

They have not yet started using the anti-icing calcium chloride solution.

“We do pre-wet all our materials using calcium chloride. It does increase our effectiveness.

“But currently we are using a mixture of sand and salt that is adjusted based on the current conditions,” Marinkovich said.

“Currently the conditions have not been good or acceptable for the use of the calcium chloride but we will be using that tool when the conditions call for it.”

Between 11 a.m. Wednesday and 11 a.m. Thursday, EMS in Edmonton responded to 38 calls for falls, at least 12 of which were related to environmental conditions.

To compare, EMS usually responds to about five calls on a typical winter day in Edmonton related to the weather conditions.

Watch: It turns out there’s a lot humans can learn from penguins when it comes to walking in slippery conditions. Emily Mertz explains. (Jan. 27, 2016)

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