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Toronto crews preparing as another major snowstorm looms

Click to play video: 'Toronto crews preparing as another major snowstorm looms' Toronto crews preparing as another major snowstorm looms
WATCH: Toronto crews preparing as another major snowstorm looms – Feb 1, 2022

The City of Toronto is preparing for another significant winter storm to hit the area on Wednesday.

In a press release issued Tuesday, the city said crews are “ready to work non-stop to respond to a forecasted snowfall of approximately 20 centimetres of snow beginning Wednesday evening.”

The city said preparations are underway with operations “focused on the safety and movement of residents and emergency vehicles, with salting and plowing of roads, sidewalks and bike lanes.”

Read more: More snow expected for southern Ontario to start off February

Earlier on Tuesday, a special weather statement was issued for Toronto.

Environment Canada said snowfall accumulations between 10 and 20 cm are possible by Friday.

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The agency said rain showers Tuesday night will turn to snow on Wednesday afternoon or evening in the Golden Horseshoe.

“Areas farther west will see a changeover to snow on Wednesday morning,” the statement said. “Snow is expected to taper on Friday.”

The city said it is taking “several steps to ready for this multi-day snowfall.”

According to the release, more than 1,500 personnel, 600 snowplows, 360 sidewalk plows and 200 salt trucks will be used 24/7.

“Salters will be deployed as soon as the expected rain changes to freezing rain,” the release reads. “Plows and salters will be strategically placed across the city, ready to begin operations in their assigned areas as soon as possible in response to the weather.”

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The city said plowing crews will be deployed on major streets and sidewalks as the snow falls and will plow “hard and fast overnight.”

“Residents are asked, if possible, to move their vehicles from major roadways, especially snow routes, before Wednesday evening to allow salters and plows to safely and efficiently clear the snow,” the release reads.

The city is also asking drivers to remain a safe distance from crews working to clear snow.

According to the city, snow removal operations are “expected to continue after plowing operations have been substantially completed.”

Click to play video: 'More snow expected for southern Ontario to start February' More snow expected for southern Ontario to start February
More snow expected for southern Ontario to start February – Jan 31, 2022

Meanwhile, cleanup is still ongoing in parts of the city from a massive snowstorm which dumped more than 50 cm of snow on the city on Jan. 17.

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The city said as of Jan. 31, 2022, crews had removed 92,280 tonnes of snow, and had completed snow removal on 1,471 km of roads and from 505 school loading zones.

What’s more, the city said 30,940 loads of snow had been at designated city sites, and snow plowing and clearing had been completed on 99 per cent of all sidewalks.

MTO monitoring, preparing

In a statement emailed to Global News, Dakota Brasier, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Transportation (MTO) said winter maintenance crews are “aware of the adverse weather forecast” and are “monitoring weather and highway conditions in anticipation of the large snowfall expected to hit southern Ontario this week.”

Brasier said in preparation for the storm, anti-icing liquid application will be carried out on “certain highway sections to prevent ice and snow from bonding to the pavement.”

Brasier said the MTO’s maintenance contractors deploy winter maintenance equipment within 30 minutes of the start of the storm to help plow and salt highways.

“Plowing will begin once two centimetres of snow or slush begins accumulating on highway pavement,” the email reads. “During and after the storm, winter maintenance operations are continuous until bare pavement is achieved.”

Brasier said the ministry will also work with the Ontario Provincial Police and its towing partners to clear highways and “keep people and goods moving safely.”

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