January 10, 2019 7:49 pm

Lethbridge street sweepers hit roads unseasonably early thanks to minimal snowfall

The City of Lethbridge began its street sweeping early due to warmer winter weather.

Global News

Lethbridge’s mild winter is allowing the city to keep its plows stowed away this winter and get an early start on street sweeping instead.

“Getting those street sweepers out earlier in the year is a tremendous help to us,” said Lee Perkins, outgoing transportation operations manager with the City of Lethbridge.

READ MORE: Warmer winter predicted in Lethbridge despite early snowfall

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With 2017 seeing heavy snowfall, workers were out in full force last December, plowing streets for 31 days straight.

However this year, thanks to drier weather, the city has been able to spend its time patching roads and sweeping streets instead.

“This year, Mother Nature has been quite kind to us,” Perkins said.

“We’ve been able to be out and doing what we usually don’t get to do until spring.”

READ MORE: City says ice surfaces on lakes and ponds not safe in Lethbridge

Perkins added that if these conditions remain the same throughout the remainder of the winter season, continued sweeping work will help to not only lighten the spring cleanup load but could also alleviate some budget worries, too.

“Our budget runs from Jan. 1 until Dec. 31 so if we have a mild winter now, it will set us up great for next fall,” Perkins said.

But as southern Alberta weather remains unpredictable, Perkins said he isn’t counting out the possibility of more snowfall in the next few months.

“You never know. There’s been times where we’ve been out in the morning street sweeping and actually plowing snow in the evening so it’s all in Mother Nature’s hands,” Perkins said.

“And if we have a bad fall, as we did in 2018, then we can burn through that budget pretty quick.”

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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