(TLN) Laval mayor Marc Demers’ office has issued a statement saying that the mayor and the municipal administration are actively at work assigning crews to take all measures necessary to remove ice from all the City of Laval’s streets and sidewalks.
Up to Feb. 28, the de-icing operations had necessitated the use of all the city’s reserves of salt and abrasives which had been stocked for a normal winter season, according to the city.
Salt stocks depleted
The depletion of the stocks made it necessary to purchase additional salt and abrasives recently. The city says public works crews will be using as much salt and abrasives as necessary to ensure the safety of Laval residents for the remainder of this winter.
The City of Laval has already gone through its entire season’s worth of supply — 44,400 metric tonnes (MT) of salt. While Laval still has a relatively small emergency supply in stock, it won’t be enough to last the winter. An extra shipment of 4,500 MT is currently on its way from Morocco and expected to arrive on March 4.
“The City of Laval paid 34 per cent more for salt this year because of a strike at a salt mine in Ontario last summer,” said Laval city spokesperson Louis-Philippe Dorais. “This reduced the supply on the North American market, forcing us to find international suppliers.”
The low salt supply, combined with this season’s abnormally icy conditions, is wreaking havoc on roads and sidewalks and breaking municipal budgets.
Given the announcement of an expected thaw, city crews are hard at work this week on residential streets in all areas of Laval. In cases where they find it impossible to use machinery as is the normal practice, abrasives are being spread manually by the blue collar workers. A snow removal operation took place last weekend, followed by additional de-icing early this past week.
A hard winter
The city says it sincerely regrets the inconveniences Laval residents have had to endure during this exceptionally difficult winter, while pointing out that many other municipalities across Quebec were also affected.
According to the city, a group of municipalities from across the province is contemplating the situation and discussing corrective measures as wintertime weather grows more unpredictable with global warming and climate change.