2013 – 2014 Snow Clearing Plan

Keeping Toronto’s roads and sidewalks clear of snow and ice and safe for everyone is a top priority for the City. Our crews and contractors have to clear over 5600 km of roads and 7945 km of sidewalks, which means snow clearing takes a fair amount of time.  Here’s how our crews get the job done:

  • Before a snowstorm, the City continuously checks road conditions while City staff monitors the weather and pavement temperatures.

  • Prior to a storm, anti-icing trucks are sent out to apply a layer of “brine” to roads, which facilitates the anti-icing process.

  • After 2.5 cm of snow has fallen, crews begin to plough highways.

  • Main roads are ploughed after 5 cm of snow has fallen.

  • After the snow has stopped falling and there’s an accumulation of 8 cm of snow on the ground, side streets are ploughed. It can take up to 15 to 20 hours after a snowfall for crews to clear local roads.

  • Mechanical sidewalk ploughing begins after 8 cm of snowfall.

  • Snow removal at transit stops and crosswalks take place after the main roads have been ploughed.

City Ploughs and “Ice” Windrows

Cleaning snow off your driveway is a difficult and tiring job. I have heard from many of you how frustrating it is when City ploughs clean the road of snow pushing it onto your driveways or sidewalks creating “ice” windrows. These windrows could block your driveway.

This often happens after residents have painstakingly cleared their driveways early in the morning so they can drive to work. I would like to hear from you on any ideas or suggestions that may help the City solve this problem.

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