Since mid-December, our city has been struggling with a huge amount of snow and rolling power outages. It has been frustrating for everyone, but one thing is clear: we’re all in this together.
It all started two Sundays before Christmas. We had our first substantial snowfall of the season and the ground all over the city was white. It was time to call in the plows.
Since then, our city has experienced consistent snowfall and low temperatures – something we don’t normally have to grapple with. It’s usually mild and rainy, which helps us get rid of the snow more quickly.
Snow clearing is taking longer than usual because there just continues to be so much of it added to the pile. And snow removal (physically taking snow away rather than just putting it to the side) is not being scheduled very often because our equipment is required for clearing 24/7.
A lot of people are very inconvenienced by the amount of snow, and many people’s safety is put at risk with frigid temperatures and unsafe roadways. That’s why we have to pull together as a community to look out for one another.
I will demand a full review of our city’s snow operations once the worst has passed and we can look at what’s gone on here. And I hope that the province will do the same with our electrical grid.
In the meantime we have to remember that whether the system was well designed or not, whether or not we were prepared for our recent economic growth that led to higher demand, there is a large number of people working around the clock to keep us warm and safe.
Let’s help them do their job by doing the following:
- Turn off unnecessary electrical appliances, even when the power is out
- Clear the snow where you can, and help your neighbours who are elderly or less able-bodied
- Share news of outages and efforts to fix them so people are aware of what’s going on
Above all, stay positive. We are living in an incredible city that is experiencing intense weather, and we're experiencing some growing pains. Our population is growing faster than anticipated, we’re adding new homes (and lots of new roads) to clear out, and our standard of living is rising faster than wages.
These are all issues that I’ve already started addressing in my few short months on council, and I’ll keep you in the loop as we move ahead. But right now I want to thank you for your patience with our crews and ask you to stay warm and safe!