Snow and Ice Clearing

Snow and Ice Clearing

The City of Victoria closely monitors weather forecasts to prepare for winter storms. Using dedicated weather services and pavement temperature sensors, we monitor the conditions on the streets and sidewalks to determine what action to take to minimize ice, snow accumulation and slippery conditions.

When cold temperatures are anticipated, City crews begin to brine roads to prevent icy conditions.  When snow starts to accumulate, crews begin clearing “first priority” roads, such as emergency routes, hills, and bridge decks and “first priority” sidewalks, including downtown transit stops, wheelchair ramps, and sidewalks fronting City properties downtown.

After first priority routes are addressed, Crews work to remove ice and snow from second and third priority roads and sidewalks. Learn more.

Service Updates

Snow and Ice Clearing - Tuesday, February 16 (3pm)

Crews continue to remove remaining snow from streets and clear catch basins to help the melt.  Give a catch basin near you a shovel if you can to help water go with the flow and drain from city streets. We appreciate your patience and understanding as crews finish their clean up now that the storm has past.

Snow and Ice Clearing - Monday, February 15 (12pm)

Thank you to our snow clearing crews for all their hard work this long weekend. And thank you to our residents and businesses for your patience. As the snow continues to melt, snow removal will continue. Please help keep storm drain catch basins clear to help the melt. 

Snow and Ice Clearing - Sunday, February 14 (5:30 p.m.)

Warmer conditions this afternoon enabled crews to begin clearing secondary roads, frontages and side streets. Residential areas will continue to be plowed throughout the night. Rain is forecast. As snow melts, please help keep nearby storm drain catch basins clear to prevent flooding.

Snow and Ice Clearing - Sunday, February 14 (8 a.m.)

City crews worked through the night applying salt to priority routes. Based on today’s snowfall warning and current snowfall, crews will continue to apply salt, plow priority routes and clear downtown transit stops, wheelchair ramps and sidewalks fronting City properties. As snow lets up and when major routes are clear, City crews will begin plowing residential side streets. The forecast for tonight is snow mixed with rain.

Snow and Ice Clearing - Saturday, February 13 (6:30 p.m.)

City crews made progress clearing priority routes today. With below freezing temperatures forecast, crews will be out applying salt throughout the night to main roads, hills and bridges. Snow clearing of residential streets should begin Sunday morning depending on the weather. Flurries and rain mixed with snow are forecast. As snow melts, please help keep nearby storm drains clear to prevent flooding.

Snow and Ice Clearing - Saturday, February 13 (11:50 a.m.)

As snow continues to fall, crews will focus on clearing priority roads throughout the day and clear downtown transit stops, wheelchair ramps and sidewalks fronting City properties downtown. Crews will begin clearing residential streets as soon as they can. Stay safe out there and check on neighbours who may need assistance. 

Snow and Ice Clearing - Saturday, February 13 (7 a.m.)

City crews were out all night salting and clearing priority routes and hills, downtown transit stops, wheelchair ramps and sidewalks fronting City properties downtown. Snow clearing continues. As snow continues to fall, crews will focus on clearing priority routes. They will begin clearing residential streets as soon as they can. Protected bike lanes are cleared to reduce black ice later that can become a hazard at intersecting crosswalks and transit stops. 

Free Parking at City Parkades Due to Snow - Saturday, February 13

To help City crews clear downtown streets, please park off-street at one of our five City parkades, which are FREE today due to the heavy snowfall. Learn more about parking downtown.

Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre – OPEN Sunday, February 14

Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre is OPEN TODAY for pre-booked visits. Happy Valentines Day!

Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre - CLOSED Saturday, February 13

Due to snow conditions, Crystal Pool and Fitness Centre will be CLOSED TODAY. An update will be posted at 7 a.m. on Sunday if the facility is able to open tomorrow.  

Garden Waste Drop-off  - CLOSED Saturday,  February 13

Saturday’s Garden Waste Drop-Off at the Public Works Yard will be closed due to anticipated snowfall. It will re-open on Saturday, February 20 from 7 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Help Keep our Sidewalks Safe When it Snows:

Keep Sidewalks Clear 

There are over 450 kilometres of sidewalks in Victoria and a community effort is required to keep our sidewalks safe. Residents and businesses are reminded that under the Streets and Traffic Bylaw, they are required to clear snow and ice from sidewalks in front of their property by 10 a.m. each day. Residents with garbage pick-up on days when it is snowing are also asked to keep pathways clear or put their bins on the curb to reduce the risk of staff injuries.

Residents are encouraged to make arrangements with neighbours in advance to clear each other’s sidewalks in the event they are away from home or work when it snows. Many of our community members have difficulty clearing snow and ice. Your neighbour may need your help, so lend a hand if you can.

Please do not shovel or plough snow onto city streets or sidewalks. It slows snow removal and can be dangerous. Those who do not comply with the Bylaw may face a fine of $125 per ticketed offence (per day). A ticket can be issued up to six months after an offence has occurred. 

Check out these helpful information sheets on the roles and responsibilities of residents and business in Victoria when it snows.

Snow Clearing Tools to Have on Hand

Snow clearing tools for Victoria businesses and households include shovels, sand, and environmentally sensitive ice melt products that remove snow and ice from sidewalks and driveways. **Please avoid using rock salt, as it is harmful to concrete sidewalks, pets’ paws and the environment. Ice melt products should be applied only moderately to avoid ice accumulation.

Ice and Snow in Bike Lanes

Downtown protected bike lanes will also be brined in advance of snow or ice and will be addressed in order of overall City priority. Cyclists should monitor changing weather conditions. If snow can’t be cleared immediately from bike lanes, they may be closed for safety reasons.

Protected bike lanes are cleared of snow using smaller equipment and do not take away resources from roadway maintenance. It is important to clear protected bike lanes as snow can build up on the curb. When the snow melts and then freezes, it can create black ice. This creates a hazardous condition for cyclists and pedestrians where protected bike lanes intersect crosswalks or bus stops.

Non-protected bike lanes are serviced by regular snow and ice roadway equipment at the time the route is plowed, salted or brined.

Emergency Kit

Now is also the time to refresh an emergency kit with a working flashlight, radio, new batteries, and to have plenty of food, essential medicine and extra blankets on hand. Learn more about the supplies residents and businesses need to cope for a minimum of three days in the event of a heavy snowfall or power outage at VictoriaReady.ca.

Learn More

Learn more about the roles and responsibilities of residents and businesses when it snows, and how the City prepares for snow and prioritizes snow clearing.