Streets to get messy as weather melts more snow

Central Albertans might want to put on their rain boots this week. The big melt has arrived.

Central Albertans might want to put on their rain boots this week.

The big melt has arrived.

Temperatures are expected to reach anywhere from 6C to 8C for the rest of the week. That’s making for a bit of a wet mess on local streets.

“There’s been a few calls about water collecting or ‘ponding,’ but nothing severe,” said Jim Chase, the City of Red Deer’s roads superintendent.

“A lot of that is happening because of frozen catch basin leads under the roadways.”

Crews with steaming equipment were out all day Monday de-icing basins as well as clearing gutters for the snow melt to flow to curb-side drains.

“It’s been just the right rate of melting,” said Chase. “As long as we don’t get any rain, we should be good.”

It’s also been fairly calm so far for the restoration company Red Deer Fire and Flood Ltd.

“We’ve only had four calls today about some basement seepage,” said co-owner Don McLeod.

“The snow melt is disappearing where it should: down the drains.”

McLeod reminds homeowners to keep the snow away from their foundations.

All outdoor skating rinks in Red Deer were closed for the season on Monday due to the climbing temperatures.

This includes Bower Ponds, Anders on the Lake, Westlake and the Speed Skating Oval downtown. Parks crews will be watching the ice conditions on rivers and water bodies.

Locals are asked to follow all warning signs and be cautious of spring thawing.

Road bans for all paved and chip-sealed roads in Red Deer County are slated to begin today, with the exception of industrial subdivisions.

Axle weight allowances are reduced on all county highways, gravel roads, residential subdivisions and hamlets.

Flooding will not be extreme this week for Red Deer region as the snow melt will be gradual, said John McIntyre, an Environment Canada meteorologist.

This is largely due to overnight lows dipping below zero and consistent warm air during the day.

But the region isn’t in the clear yet.

There is a 60 to 70 per cent chance of flurries or rain showers by Sunday, said McIntyre.

“It’s only March,” warns McLeod.

“We know we could see a lot more snow and melting in April.”

rfrancoeur@bprda.wpengine.com

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