Plowed snow piling up on sidewalks raises concerns for Calgarians
Shoveling sidewalks is just part of living in Calgary but for Manuel Gallardo, it’s becoming more work than it should be.
The Redstone resident came home Tuesday evening to find snow and ice covering his previously-shoveled walk. When he checked his security cameras, he saw that the culprit was a city plow that drove too close to the curb.
Gallardo, who suffers from arthritis, said the prospect of cleaning up the windrows was deflating.
“It makes me feel upset and very tired,” said Gallardo. “To be quite honest with you, I’m angry. I am paying for services.”
He said if extra snow and ice continues to build up on the busy walkway, his neighbors will start having a tough time walking in the community.
“There are quite a few people here that rely on the sidewalk daily to go to school and work,” he said.
Gallardo also called into question the driver diligence, saying workers should be more conscientious while clearing snow.
”Maybe he wasn’t caring enough or he wasn’t paying attention to what he was doing,” he said.
Chris McGeachy, a City of Calgary spokesperson, responded to the complaint, saying the conditions could have an impact on where the snow goes.
“The snow is very wet and very heavy so it was probably just a case where it was moving a little bit further down [than] the operator anticipated,” he said.
Plow operators are trained not to push snow onto the sidewalk but McGeachy said that with 16,000 km of roadway in Calgary, incidents like this are bound to happen.
“Sometimes there is collateral damage,” said McGeachy. “We just remind citizens that if they are not able to keep the sidewalk clear, just give 311 a call.”
McGeachy said that when the city receives a complaint, a crew will be dispatched after the full seven-day snow plan is complete. If there is a large enough amount of snow, McGeachy said the city will clear the sidewalk.
He added that programs like Snow Angels can help residents who aren’t able to clear the snow themselves.
Homeowners are required to shovel sidewalks 24 hours after a snowfall has ended.
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