Ontario government introduces news standards for clearing snow on Highways 11 and 17
Tim Brody - Editor
Good news for area residents travelling this winter.
On Nov. 18, the Ontario government announced a new standard for clearing snow on Highways 11 and 17.
The new “ON Trans-Canada” standard requires contractors to clear the highways to bare pavement within 12 hours of the end of a winter storm. This is four hours faster than the previous standard.
“Our government is the first to create a new highway level of service that will ensure Highways 11 and 17 are cleared faster, while improving road safety for drivers in the North,” said Caroline Mulroney, Minister of Transportation. “Ontario already has nation-leading standards in place when it comes to winter maintenance, and this builds on our government’s broader efforts to ensure we keep it that way.”
The Ontario government shared, “The new standard for clearing snow follows a detailed technical review of winter maintenance operations on Highways 11 and 17 and analysis of data from the winter maintenance pilot from the past two winter seasons on these highways.”
In addition to the new standard, the provincial government has taken other actions to enhance winter maintenance on Ontario highways, including:
- Increased use of underbody plows that have better performance in removal of snowpack as compared to conventional plows.
- Increased proactive use of anti-icing liquids before storms to make it easier to clear snow.
- Building an additional 24 Road Weather Information Stations (14 in Northern Ontario) to respond to changing winter weather conditions faster and more effectively.
- Enhancing 14 rest areas as a safe place to stop during the winter season, including rehabilitation of the rest areas along Highways 11, 17 and 599.
- Moving ahead with the first-ever 2+1highway pilot in North America to help make our roads even safer.