Driving conditions change as winter kicks in

Accumulated snow falls and frigid temperatures abruptly threw drivers into the winter zone last week and there were a few hiccups.

Accumulated snow falls and frigid temperatures abruptly threw drivers into the winter zone last week and there were a few hiccups.

Motorists trying to turn left at Hodgson Road off South Lakeside on Saturday afternoon were detained because the turning light only came on every third green light.

The city said Monday the problem had corrected itself but surmised the intermittent lighting may have been because the lanes were obscured by snow.

“People may not have been all the way inside the lanes like they normally would be, so the camera that picks up on cars waiting to turn left did not pick them up,” the city said.

As the winter months unfold, the city is asking residents to have garbage carts to the curb before 7 a.m. on collection day and to take them from the curb as soon as possible afterwards.

For its part, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure said the public can expect Highways 97 and 20 to be maintained first by its contractor Interior Roads.

“Following that we would drop down to our main commuter routes such as the ones that support school buses,” said Todd Hubner, the ministry’s Cariboo district manager.

Below that is residential subdivisions, he added.

The rankings are determined by the ministry and take into account the type of traffic and the speed limits.

Originally the duration of highway maintenance contracts was for 10 years.

However, in 2013, the ministry offered companies an extension of an additional five years.

“There’s a significant investment required to capitalize equipment and yards,” Hubner said. “You don’t want to be changing contractors every few years. You want them to get into a bit of a rhythm, to get to know the snow issues in the region.”

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