Winnipeggers dealing with the aftermath of winter’s first snow storm

WINNIPEG –

A day after being battered by snow and heavy winds, Winnipeggers are in the process of digging themselves out.

City crews are working around the clock to clear streets and sidewalks, and snow routes are going to be in effect earlier than normal.

“The director of public works has declared an extended snow route parking ban from midnight until 7 a.m. on snow routes, so that the snow clearing crews can get the job done,” said Mayor Brian Bowman.

City workers aren’t the only busy ones, as CAA Manitoba has been out helping people on the roads.

President Tim Scott said by 10 a.m. Friday, they had already surpassed their daily average for assistance calls.

“Primarily extractions, taking people out of ditches, getting stuck cars getting hung up on the snow banks. So that’s taking a lot more time. Our average call is about an hour per car,” said Scott.

Even though drivers needed help on the roads, Manitoba Public Insurance (MPI) said collision counts were below daily averages on Friday.

MPI attributes this to some people staying off the roads altogether and those who were driving, were driving to the conditions.

“Many, many people were expecting it. They prepared themselves for it,” said Brian Smiley with MPI, “Unlike sometimes, we’ve had storms that roll in unexpectedly, particularly the ice storms where it’s freezing rain. Those are very troublesome. That’s where we’ll typically see our claims counts really spike.”

CTV News caught up with one woman who was out shovelling. Martine Friesen said it was a lot of hard work Friday.

“It’s really heavy, and I’m sort of leaving a trail of ice, so I don’t know actually if I’m making it worse or making it better,” said Friesen.

She added that she and her husband needed help with their vehicle as well, but they were saved by someone with a shovel to dig them out.

Despite the large amount of snow, Friesen said she plans on enjoying the winter season.

“I love winter. I’m one of those weirdos, you know? I really love winter. I say bring it on.”

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