Winter is here and we need to adjust our driving habits for the changing road and weather conditions. While County crews are out plowing, grading, and sanding the roads, please be patient and allow our crews plenty of space to work.
What can you do to help keep operators and other drivers safe?
❄️ Watch for equipment turning.
❄️ Flashing amber and red means snowplow ahead.
❄️ Leave 15 metres between your vehicle and any equipment.
❄️ Do not pass a snowplow.
Operators will pull over when it is safe to allow vehicles to pass.
Plan your route and check for road closures or delays.
Find up-to-date, province-wide information at 511 Alberta.
Follow these winter driving tips from Alberta Transportation.
Find information about winterizing your vehicle, what to put in an emergency kit, winter tires and safe driving tips.
Consider enrolling new drivers in Winter Driving School to help them stay safe on icy and snow-covered roads.
Sturgeon County crews continuously monitor, maintain, and clear the roads all winter long.
To prepare for major storms, or a snow event with more than 10 cm (4 inches) of snow on the ground, we have established service goals and a priority sequence for clearing County roads. For more details see our Snow and Ice Control Policy (2016).
Alberta Transportation is responsible for snow and ice removal on all numbered highways.
Snow event plowing priorities
Snow events are declared when snowfall accumulation meets or exceeds 10 cm (4 inches).
After the storm ends, crews begin clearing the snow and ice from the roads.
Roads are plowed in priority sequence:
Priority 1. Paved and oiled access roads (arterials, collectors) that have high traffic volumes.
Priority 2. Other paved and oiled roads within subdivisions (local roads).
Priority 3. Gravel roads (collectors, local roads) and subdivisions.
Snow event service goals
Our goal is to complete snow and ice control on Priority 1 roads within 24-hours, and Priority 2 and 3 roads within 72-hours after a snow event ends.
Transportation crews typically work weekdays from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. plowing, sanding, and clearing snow. However, after a significant snowfall of more than 10 cm, our plow operators will increase their hours and work seven days a week to meet this goal.
Windrows or snow ridges
A windrow or snow ridge is a pile of snow left at the side of the road after plowing.
Crews try to minimize the size of the windrows, but they are not able to circle back with the large equipment to clear windrows away from individual driveways. We ask residents to clear their own approaches.
Residents also have the option of hiring a private contractor to clear windrows from the road in front of their house.
Using salt and sand
The ice control or traction product a snowplow operator uses depends on the temperature. Below -10 Celsius, salt is not very effective. Instead, we apply a brine mixture as a de-icing agent and use sand for traction at many intersections.
Ice control measures, like salt, sand, and brine, are applied on an ongoing basis during snowfalls, frost, or freezing rain to improve traction for motorists.
Clearing snow from your driveway
When you are clearing snow from your driveway, be sure to push it off to the right side. This way, when the snowplows and graders come by, they do not push it back onto your driveway.
Also, you should never push the snow across the road into the ditches. Crossing into oncoming traffic is dangerous, and the chunks of snow and ice left behind on the road can create a hazard for other drivers.
Remember, obstructing the road in any way, even with pieces of snow and ice, is an offence under the Traffic Bylaw and carries a fine of $500.00.
How do I report a road concern?
To report a problem on a gravel or local paved road contact Sturgeon County:
Monday to Friday: 780-939-8252 or 1-866-939-9303
After hours: 780-939-4321
To report a problem on a numbered provincial highway, contact Alberta Transportation