Monday, 24 Jun 2024

Snow wreaking havoc on Regina roads, despite city’s best efforts

Blowing snow and howling winds ensured the morning commute was the first treacherous winter drive of the season – especially for those without snow tires.

“We had sanders and plow trucks out last night working all night, working extra hours into the morning shift to have coverage for rush hour traffic,” City of Regina’s director of roadways and transportation Norman Kyle said.

Eight sanders, eight graders and one sidewalk-clearing machine were on the roads on Tuesday, but the snow still wreaked havoc on the Queen City.

Regina police responded to 17 collisions on Tuesday, six involving injuries.

The accidents were mainly in suburban neighbourhoods, which could be a concern for some drivers – especially since the city has no plans to plow those roads.

“An event like this, we wouldn’t be touching residential roads just yet. Just not enough snow, not enough ice,” Kyle said.

Kyle said he understands the driving conditions aren’t ideal, but added it will take a little more snow for crews to be out in full force.

“We got a far bit of snow, but nothing close to a systematic plow – so it’s manageable within that equipment force,” Kyle said.

“Once we get five centimetres or more [of snow], we will start the systematic plow.”

Kyle said when the city is in storm mode, they focus on high-speed routes and major intersections. If ruts caused by snow in neighbourhood roads get bad enough, the city would consider sending graders to even them out.

According to SGI, the best plan is just to drive for the weather.

“It’s always important when you first head out to get a feel for the road, start a little bit slowly, get a sense of how your car is performing with the road conditions and the traction,” SGI communications manager Tyler McMurchy said.

That means giving a lot of distance between cars and braking or accelerating gradually – and if you do spin, don’t panic.

“Ease up on the accelerator [and] brake gradually. If you find yourself going into a bit of a tailspin, look where you want to go and steer there,” McMurchy said.

Another piece of advice, McMurchy recommends, is to give yourself more time in the morning for your commute to ensure you get to where you’re going safely.

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