The Town of Gander Public Works Depot has a comprehensive snow clearing plan in place for the winter season. This plan is followed by equipment operators who plow and spread salt/sand on Town streets to keep them safe and accessible for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Equipment operators follow assigned routes and, using a computerized control system, spread salt/sand for ice control (about 1,100 tonnes a year). For heavier snowfalls, our heavy equipment consisting of three loaders and two graders are then brought into action. If required, our fleet of three snow blowers will be used for snow removals and street widening.
Streets are plowed in a planned order based on a priority list.
- 1st priority is given to the major streets – consists of heaviest traffic flow.
- 2nd priority includes secondary streets, connector streets and residential areas.
- Collector Streets - The network of streets that connect various community and commercial areas with the Provincial Road network. They carry medium to large volumes of traffic at medium speeds. The objective is to keep collector streets as bare as possible. Plowing will be curb to curb and should be continued throughout the storm. Salt should be applied if required after plowing is completed. If temperatures are too low to remove ice, the ice can be tolerated for some time so long as it does not create a hazard at intersections.
- Local Streets - The network of streets that connect various community and commercial areas with the Provincial Road network. They carry medium to large volumes of traffic at medium speeds. Some ice or packed snow can be tolerated on local streets so long as it does not become deep enough to cause rutting. If these streets become icy, however, they should be treated with salt or abrasives, particularly at hills and intersections. Plowing should begin as soon as possible after the conditions on the Collector Streets are under control. Plowing of all streets should be completed within four to five hours after the end of the storm.
- Parking Lots - Municipal Parking Lots in the commercial area that are plowed and maintained by the Town. The objective should be to have all Parking Lots plowed before 9:00 a.m. on all business days. In major snowfall events, delays may occur.
- Service Roads - Providing access to municipal utilities. Service roads should be plowed as soon as possible after the storm is over. Service Roads in the business area should be plowed before 9:00 a.m. when possible. The Service Road to the rear of Gander Academy and all school Bus Stops should be plowed before school opens.
- Snow Removal - When plowing has been completed after a major snow event, it is often necessary to widen the streets by blowing it onto lawns or similar areas. Snow blowing should begin immediately after all plowing has been completed. Each street should be widened on one side before widening of the second side begins. Trucking of snow to snow disposal dumps is often necessary from the streets in the commercial area, from parking lots and cul de sacs. This work should take place after all streets have been widened.
- Sidewalks Sidewalk - snow clearing is performed while streets are being plowed. If necessary, a loader-mounted snow blower will widen streets and sidewalks. Priority is given to sidewalks near the schools and the commercial areas where pedestrian traffic is highest. When sidewalks become icy, sand should be applied to the sidewalk surface.
- Fire Hydrants - All fire hydrants are clearly marked so that they can be found even when buried in snow. The fire hydrants are to be cleared after snow plowing operations have been completed. The work is carried out by loaders, plus maintenance staff with shovels. Because of the danger of breaking off a hydrant, this work should proceed during daylight hours only, when visibility is best.