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Here's how to stay safe on the roads today

If you have to be out there in today's snowstorm, keep a safe distance from snow plows and take care when passing, York Region advises
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plow
File photo/Village Media
NEWS RELEASE
REGIONAL MUNICIPALITY OF YORK
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Environment Canada has issued a snow fall warning starting today. Approximately 15 cm of snow expected to fall by Tuesday morning.

The Regional Municipality of York reminds residents to slow down and give yourself extra time and space going to your destinations when driving in poor weather.

York Region is responsible for the maintenance of approximately 1,200 kilometres (or more than 4,200 lane-kilometres) of roadways across all nine cities and towns. During the winter months this includes snow plowing, snow removal, sanding, salting and use of salt-brine to help prevent ice build-up on roads.

Road conditions are monitored 24 hours a day to ensure roads are safe and passable in winter conditions. York Region uses a road weather information system to track rain, snow and ice and GPS tracking to maximize the effectiveness of the winter maintenance fleet before, during and after winter storms. In addition, patrol vehicles are equipped with sensors to gauge the temperature of the road surface to better identify when roads may need to be treated.

All plow trucks are equipped with electronic spreader controls to help ensure the right amount of anti-ice materials are released at the right time and in the right place, minimizing impacts of salt to the environment.

Motorists should also take precautions when travelling during changing road conditions:
  • Stay off roads, if possible, during extreme weather conditions
  • Let us do the driving by taking YRT
  • Give yourself extra time to get to your destination
  • Have winter tires on your vehicle
  • Clear snow, ice and frost from all windows, headlights, tail lights and roof
  • Make sure your windshield fluid and vehicle fuel is topped up
  • Carry a roadside emergency kit 
  • Follow York Region on Twitter for road updates
  • Pedestrians should be visible and be seen
  • Drivers need to slow down and respect pedestrian’s crossing the road 
If you have to be on the road, please give plows plenty of room:
  • Drive a safe distance behind the plow; you may see them but they may not see you if you are following too closely
  • Only pass snow removal vehicles when a safe passing area is available and the lane is clear of snow or treated with salt or sand; do not pass on the right
  • When passing a plow, be sure to leave plenty of space; plows are wider than most vehicles and portions of the plow and blade may be obscured by blowing snow
  • Don’t travel beside a plow; they can shift sideways after moving snow drifts 

Fast Facts

  • Number of plow routes: 75
  • Number of winter maintenance vehicles: 115
  • Number of Region-owned winter maintenance vehicles: 29
  • Time it takes to spread sand/salt on one round of Regional Roads: approximately 90 minutes
  • Time it takes to plow one round of Regional roads: approximately 130 minutes
  • Number of vehicle trips travelling on Regional roads daily: 2.4 million

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