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Castlegar Civic Works department gets kudos after getting buried

Kyra Hoggan
By Kyra Hoggan
December 8th, 2010

Castlegar emergency services are giving the local Civic Works department a pat on the back, after a week filled with car-accident calls on local highways – but none on city thoroughfares.

“We’re taking quite a few highway calls – and on all the highways, too: Highway 22, Highway 3 both east and west, and Broadwater Road,” said Fire Chief Gerry Rempel. “I think we’ve had at least 10 highway calls just in the past week.”

City crews, meanwhile, have been put to the test with the perfect storm of lousy driving conditions, according to Civic Works director Chris Barlow.

“A healthy dose of snow, followed by rain, makes things particularly difficult,” Barlow said. “The rain packs the snow down, so it’s hard to plow down to the bare asphalt.

“Then the rain creates stormwater accumulation, but the catch basins are clogged with snow,” he added.

The resulting mess is being managed with dispatch, though, largely because Barlow and his staff anticipated a heavy snowfall season.

“It was forecasted, and last year was a very light year, so we thought we were probably due,” he said. “We’re well-prepared, carrying the largest stock of winter road sand we’ve had in years.”

He said most of the camplaints the department has been receiving have been regarding the highways, while residents seem largely content with the condition of city streets.

Categories: General

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