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Residents concerned over city road clearing

Approximately 30 cm of snow has fallen over the past two weeks

One Elliot Lake resident is upset with how the city streets have been maintained this year, saying the lack of snow plowing on her street recently left her unable to get out to get medications.

Over the past few weeks, the city has experienced significant snowfall, often having snow squall warnings as well as blowing snow affecting visibility in some areas.

Charlotte Lavoie said it took city plows six hours to get to her street, making her miss personal engagements and appointments.

"I'm a little old lady, aged 70, and I live on Laurier," she said. "The plows didn't come at a decent time. I get they work and work and have other more pressing matters to deal with but in all seriousness, waiting and getting stuck on the hill isn't right at all."

Lavoie expressed concern for other seniors who weren't as lucky as her to have gotten out of the snow.

"I was stuck," she explained. "My husband is in a wheelchair and can't drive. I had to get his medications and the roads were not plowed or sanded or anything. I had my neighbour shovel me out of my driveway. I get halfway down and I'm stuck. My car always has winter tires. I called the city and I was rudely told they would get their butts here when they can and want to. Is that right?"

Following up on her comment about the Public Works Department getting to her "when they can and want to," ElliotLakeToday contacted the Public Works Department multiple times and was told they would not leave a comment about their snow plow situation.

Lavoie isn't the only one upset with the lack of plowing. Justin Whalen also expressed his concern about the roads not getting the attention they need when snow falls.

"I live on Colwill and let me tell you, we didn't see a plow fix the road until the next day," he said. "Yes, I know they're busy but come on. How are people supposed to get out? What about the elderly?"

Over the past two weeks, the city received around 30 cm of snow. City plows have been busy clearing out the main roads and the highway leading in and out of the city. But according to Lavoie and Whalen, some roads have not received sanding and vehicles were sliding and getting stuck.

"My daughter's bus got stuck on my street," said Whalen. "He was able to get going. No sand whatsover. My neighbour took her dog for a walk at Spruce Beach and he got stuck because there's no sand. Where are our tax dollars going?"