Don’t Slip Up This Spring
March 23, 2011
ATCO Gas, Canada Post and the City of Edmonton are asking Edmontonians to stay vigilant and continue to clear snow and ice from sidewalks and other areas around their property this spring.
Spring weather can cause snow to melt and run onto sidewalks during the day, only to freeze again at night. These freeze-thaw cycles create slippery conditions for everyone, especially people that provide valuable services to homeowners – like meter readers, waste collectors and mail carriers.
“It has been a long winter, but residents’ shovelling and sanding responsibilities aren’t over now that spring is here,” says Andrew Jabs, Acting Field Supervisor with the City’s Community Standards Branch. “It’s critical that Edmontonians keep shovelling snow and spreading sand on their walks until the snow is completely gone so that everyone, including service providers, can get around without fear of injury.”
City bylaws require that residents clear public sidewalks around their property within 48 hours of a snowfall. During freeze-thaw periods, property owners have to keep sidewalks safe by either removing ice or spreading sand. Thawing conditions provide a great opportunity to break up accumulated ice. Free sand is available in green boxes at most Community Leagues.
Homeowners also must provide garbage and recycling collectors safe access. The City asks residents to put their waste containers on the ground as close to the street or alley as possible, and to avoid putting waste on icy areas around downspouts or sump pumps.
While residents are not legally required to clear the private walks on their own property, allowing snow and ice to build up on private walks and decks can result in serious injuries to service providers. Homes with unsafe walks may also experience a disruption in their mail service and in the visits from meter readers who make sure utility bills are accurate.
Homeowners are urged to remove or clearly mark hazards that might be hidden under the snow in residential yards because buried toys, tools, construction materials and other hazards can be very dangerous for ATCO Gas meter readers.
“We want to thank residents who have kept service providers and other Edmontonians safe by keeping their walks and property clear this winter, and we appreciate your co-operation in continuing to clear snow and ice this spring,” says Jabs.