Some people called it Snowmageddon, others Snowkanagan – for most of us, last week’s major snowfall caused some sore arms and shoulders as residents tried to dig out driveways and vehicles.
There were a host of complaints about plowing. Some residents on the lower priority roads didn’t see a plow for two, three or more days. There were also variations in service between city and rural plowing. Tempers flared on both sides: angry residents were voicing complaints, while those working the plows were not immune from losing their cool. A JPW contractor scribbled an angry handwritten note on the back of an envelope, threatening a tow if a resident didn’t clear their driveway and move their car off the street.
But by and large, it appeared that people kept their heads and were understanding about the mammoth effort required to get roads plowed in the Shuswap.
The city’s policy of setting priority roads and focusing on keeping those plowed before moving on to other streets is sound. It takes into account things like emergency vehicle routes, transit and school bus routes and access for the greatest number of people. It needs to be kept in mind that a snowfall of this magnitude has only taken place four times since Environment Canada began keeping records.
Yes, there were challenges, but overall, it was a remarkable job. Kudos also need to go out to the many residents who took the time to help their neighbours. That’s true community spirit.