Frustrated residents towed out of snowy Calgary neighbourhoods say parking ban not working

Click to play video: 'Frustrated residents towed out of snowy Calgary neighbourhoods say parking ban not working'
Frustrated residents towed out of snowy Calgary neighbourhoods say parking ban not working
WATCH ABOVE: A snow route parking ban went into effect in Calgary Sunday morning. Tow truck operators are busy removing cars stuck in the snow around the city, but many residents say more vehicles should be ticketed and towed. Carolyn Kury de Castillo reports – Mar 5, 2018

A snow route parking ban went into effect at 10 a.m. Sunday in Calgary but many residents are frustrated with the number of vehicles not being moved.

“It’s stupid and it’s frustrating and the amount of people we see getting stuck and the amount of times we have to come out and help,” Bankview resident Delena Casey said.

READ MORE: Snow route parking ban starts on Sunday in Calgary

Casey along with many other Calgarians are annoyed with how many offenders are not being towed and the snow that gets left behind.

“The city wants everybody else to be responsible for doing our snow removal but then they leave it like this for everybody else,” Casey said.

“Look how far we have to park away from the curb. That’s bananas. There isn’t a point if you’re not going to do the work and you tell everybody that there is a parking ban. There are no ramifications and there’s no cost to them so they don’t care.

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“And then what happens? Everybody else on this road who lives and works here can’t park on our street because we’re halfway into traffic.”

WATCH: Calgarians take snow-clearing roads into their own hands.

Click to play video: 'Calgarians take snow-clearing roads into their own hands'
Calgarians take snow-clearing roads into their own hands

But others say moving a vehicle off the snow route and into an alley is like a trap with all the snow piled up behind homes and apartments.

“We’ve been caught like two or three times and we’ve helped out at least a half dozen people push them out.  It’s just ridiculous,” Bankivew resident Johnny Chaisson said, who was out clearing sidewalks over the weekend.

READ MORE: New snow angel project started by Calgary neighbours aims to clear snow covered bus stops

Tow trucks around Calgary have been in high demand over the weekend.  Tow truck operator Omar Sanchez says the snow has become no match for even the biggest of vehicles.

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“Some people get stuck and even the 4 x 4, the big trucks like this kind of truck, the Dodge Ram, sometimes they get in trouble,” Sanchez said.

WATCH: Plowing streets is not the only problem for the City of Calgary as it cleans up from a record snowfall, it’s also running out of places to put the extra snow. Gary Bobrovitz reports.

Click to play video: 'Calgary running out of places to put snow'
Calgary running out of places to put snow

Snow removal companies say they are even running out of places to move the snow to. Des Stephens with Tru-Green Lawn Care says this has been the worst winter in Calgary for the amount he’s had to move in the seven years he’s been clearing snow.

“The challenge of getting around to each property.  The roadways are very busy and  the street crews are out but people are getting stuck which also slows us down so we have tenants trying to get out of places and getting stuck,” said Stephens.

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READ MORE: Spring is just over two weeks away, but winter still hanging on in parts of Alberta

City councillor Gian-Carlo Carra says Calgary has one of the lowest snow removal budgets of all major Canadian cities. He wants more focus put on getting pedestrians through the snow.

“It’s about deploying our forces in a different way and it’s about whether we want to spend more of our tax dollars and tax ourselves more to do this. The big challenge is you staff up and you get a bunch of equipment and you don’t want it to sit idle for several years in a row so it’s a tough conversation,” Carra said.

The parking ban is scheduled to stay in effect all day Monday and Tuesday or until the city calls it off.  The fine for not moving a vehicle is $75.


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