November 26, 2009
Media Release

The Regional Municipality of York prepared for winter weather on our roads this season

Helpful safe winter driving information at
NEWMARKET- With colder weather forecast for this weekend, The Regional Municipality of York reminds residents that the Region’s winter maintenance program is underway and staffed to full capacity in order to keep our arterial roads clear of snow and ice.
To assist residents with winter driving in our community, the York Region website contains some helpful tips at
York Region encourages everyone to take extra care during winter driving conditions and help road clearing efforts by slowing down and driving cautiously around winter maintenance vehicles.
The Region's Transportation Services department is responsible for the maintenance of approximately 1,100 kilometres (or more than 3,400 lane-kilometres) of arterial roadways, including snow removal, sanding and salting. 
The Region has a $14 million winter maintenance program that includes:
• The use of a salt-brine solution sprayed on the roads before snowfalls to keep roads from icing and preventing snow and ice from bonding to the pavement, making it easier to remove
• A "bare pavement" policy to clear roads to a bare pavement condition as soon as reasonably possible following storm conditions
• A Road Weather Information System (RWIS) consisting of six weather stations in key parts of the Region to monitor temperature, pavement condition, salt concentration and precipitation
• A Global Positioning System (GPS) to track vehicle movement and road coverage
• Drive-through salt and sand storage sheds to reduce the amount of materials exposed to the environment
• Computerized controls on vehicles to better distribute sand and salt on road surfaces
Some quick facts about York Region’s winter maintenance program:
• Number of vehicles for winter maintenance                                                67
• Average time for salt/sand spreading (one round of all Regional roads)        90 minutes
• Average time for plowing and salting/sanding (one round of all Regional roads)                                                                                                      130 minutes
• Average amount of salt used (one round)                                                  350 tonnes
• Cost of salt per tonne                                                                              $76.00
• Cost of salt (one round)                                                                           $26,600
• Cost of salt-brine (one round)                                                                  $12,000
• Cost of one round of salting (includes equipment and labour)                      $51,000
• Cost of one round of plowing (includes salting, equipment and labour)         $53,000

York Region’s Transportation Services department works together with colleagues from the Community and Health Services department and York Regional Police Services to keep our roads safe by engineering safer roads, educating drivers about road conditions and supporting traffic enforcement efforts by members of York Regional Police.
For more information on The Regional Municipality of York, please visit
Members of the media who wish to partake in snow plow ride-a-longs can contact York Region Corporate Communications.  Please arrange one day prior to the ride-a-long.
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Media Contact: Michael Kemp, Corporate Communications, York Region
Phone: 905 830-4444 Ext. 1232 / Cell: 905 251-6419

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