Red Deer city public works crews are hitting the streets to get rid of a winter’s worth of gravel and grime.
The first street sweeping crews started on Sunday evening concentrating on medians. On Monday, the crews began work on main arteries and collector routes.
Once crews are finished with main arteries and collectors, efforts will be shifted to other streets, including residential. The annual street sweeping campaign will run around the clock and will last until early June.
Red Deer roads superintendent Jim Chase said all city roads will be cleaned to reduce dust and minimize contamination of water and soil with sanding material.
“City crews sweep the streets, sidewalks, boulevards and medians of the sand and debris collected throughout the winter. The aim is to minimize the amount of sanding material that could contaminate soil and enter the river,” said Chase. “Also, if we don’t sweep the streets, the debris left is broken down by vehicles, increasing the amount of dust and particles in the air.” Chase said.
Sidewalks adjacent to roads that were sanded during the winter will also be swept. The process can be delayed by weather conditions, including snow, sub-zero temperatures and rain.
With the sweeping program being a 24-hour-a-day operation, pedestrians and motorists are asked to be cautious around the equipment by staying at least three car lengths away to avoid injury or damage from flying debris.
When necessary, street signs will be placed in neighbourhoods a minimum of 12 hours in advance of street cleaners. Residents are asked not to park on the street when the signs are present.
Residents are also encouraged to remove litter and debris from boulevards attached to their residential or commercial properties.