LETTER: The Corporation of Delta needs to do more about icy roads and sidewalks

North Delta resident Greg Brown takes exception to the pace with which streets in the community are being cleared of ice and snow.

Many roads in North Delta are completely covered in a thick layer of ice.

Many roads in North Delta are completely covered in a thick layer of ice.

Dear Mayor Lois Jackson,

Tonight is the fourth night since the initial snowfall of New Year’s Eve. By some people’s standards, this was a ‘major’ snowfall.

I don’t know the exact amount of the snowfall, but I don’t consider a couple of inches of snow in January to be a ‘major’ snowfall. I recognize the need to establish priorities in terms of servicing streets for snow removal and salting/sanding, and the need to keep major arteries [clear] and arteries essential for major services such as ambulance, fire, hospital, etc. need priority.

However, after four nights, 110 Street between 79A and 78th Avenues and all nearby streets have yet to see any sign of of a plow, salt or sand. These streets are hilly, close to Gray Elementary and Sands Secondary schools with many children.

Furthermore, my neighbour’s family suffered a terrible tragedy New Year’s Day with the death of their father. [It was a] challenge for emergency vehicles to reach the home on the day, but [even] worse, [it] has [since] been three days of mourning with many visitors risking their safety to park, exit and visit the grieving family due to the icy and slippery streets.

The most basic of functions such as walking dogs, walking children to school, driving to work, going to the corner store, the grocery store, etc. are extremely hazardous. I myself have almost been T-boned twice by cars that have lost control due to icy conditions.

The lack of preparedness and service for weather systems that aren’t unusual for this time of year and are forecast in advance is unacceptable. Where has city leadership been during this time of need?

Before mobilizing any equipment for 110 Street and the surrounding streets, I challenge you to park your car at the end of 79A Avenue and walk down 110 Street (unaided) to 78th and turn either way so you can understand the magnitude of the risk to this community.

We are connected via Twitter and Facebook, so you have seen my posts and pictures of the situation. Yours and council’s inaction to this situation is unacceptable and risks the very citizens health with which you are charged to provide for and protect.

I’m sure [mine is] not the only street experiencing the same issues and challenges. While videos of people literally ice skating down roads in the community may provide humour and entertainment, there is no humour in slipping on ice and displacing a back, breaking a hip or an arm, resulting in the inability to work and earn income, prolonged pain, etc., not to mention the damage of personal property from car accidents.

There are no easy answers, but some preparedness and greater responsiveness at minimum is required. Of greater concern is also the forecast of more snow by week’s end.

Where have you and council been and what have you been doing? Four days response is inadequate.

Yours Truly,

Greg Brown, North Delta resident