Survey of Practice and Literature Review on Municipal Road Winter Maintenance in Canada

Efficiency of winter operations is essential for cities in cold regions because fiscal budgets are limited and excessive amounts of street sand and salt can negatively impact the environment. A review of winter maintenance policies in major Canadian cities has shown that freeways, business areas, and routes to transit and emergency venues are treated as priority. On these routes, snow is piled on the roadsides until it narrows the road width and decreases drivers’ visibility. At such time, the snow piles are hauled to specific snow storage or eliminator locations. In cities with relatively warmer climatic conditions, such as Ottawa, Toronto, and Montreal, high amounts of street salt are used annually. In cities with extremely cold winters, such as Edmonton, Calgary, and Winnipeg, Canada, sanding is more common. Friction measurement devices, which have been developed in a number of diverse models, can provide data to compare and improve winter maintenance operations. Road friction measuring devices are not used for operations in Canada, but highway agencies and municipalities have begun researching and evaluating different devices and their effectiveness in optimizing winter operations.


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  • Accession Number: 01573987
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ASCE
  • Created Date: Aug 17 2015 12:04PM