City to Review Extreme Weather Response Following Major Storm in Brampton

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It’s been about a week since the major storm that brought ice, sleet, rain, freezing rain, and even snow down on Brampton.

Many residents were critical about how the city handled the storm, and now, city council has confirmed that the city’s storm response will be reviewed and revised accordingly.

My colleagues and I learned from staff that our winter contracts for snow clearing had actually expired either in mid-March or at the beginning of April,” reads a recent statement from Mayor Linda Jeffrey.

When the contracts end the equipment and operators also are in short supply. Most of our trucks had already been converted (plows had been removed) for summer operations. Our City staff worked around the clock to bring back as many operators and equipment as possible.”

City council unanimously passed a motion on Wednesday April 18 to review the practices around responding to extreme weather events.

Council unanimously passed a motion directing staff to review the City’s storm response this past weekend and report back on measures that can be taken to better combat extreme weather incidents,” reads Jeffrey’s statement.

The motion was introduced by Councillor Gurpreet Dhillon, who tweeted more details on what exactly will be reviewed.

Days after the storm on Tuesday April 17, the city released a statement explaining why residential streets weren’t plowed.

First, the city noted that due to rainfall warnings and flood watches issued by Environment Canada, plowing residential streets would block catch basins with ice and snow, which would actually increase the risk of flooding.
Second, mirroring Jeffrey’s statement, because most contractors had redeployed their equipment at the end of March after their contracts were up, and “less than 50 per cent of the normally contracted complement was available.”
According the the city, since the storm went on for a few days, remaining resources were deployed strategically to plow and salt main roads first.

The communication by the City to our residents should have happened much earlier. We intend to do better in the future,” says Jeffrey’s statement.

Of course, the snow is mostly gone now and streets and sidewalks are no longer dangerous.

When City Staff brings back the report you have my assurance that I will be making that update public and seek your input,” reads Jeffrey’s statement.

You can read the full statement here:

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