The warm weather of this week, and the relative lack of snowfall throughout the season, have made for an unusual winter in Weyburn. With the lack of snow, though, crews from the City of Weyburn haven’t had to undertake a large snow removal operation. Instead, they have benefited from the chance to handle general maintenance and take preventative action on the priority routes.  

Preventative snow clearing has helped during the mild temperatures that the city has been experiencing, as it has allowed for the water to properly flow into the storm drain system. Sometimes, though, the water has gotten into the smallest of cracks in the roads. When this happens, it can lead to other issues.  

“The freeze-thaw cycle, it just wreaks havoc on our roads,” said Paige Tenbult. She is the Communications Co-Ordinator for the City of Weyburn. “So, although we appreciate the warm weather, we still have February and March left, and we anticipate that there will be some freeze-thaw cycles that we’re going to have to navigate with our road conditions then.” 

The current weather conditions, and the time of year, do pose a challenge for the crews from the city’s Public Works department in terms of repairing potholes, especially in high-traffic areas such as truck routes. The possibility of further cold temperatures and more freeze-thaw in the late winter means those roads in particular can be more susceptible to damage. 

“It’s hard to make a permanent fix right now on those roads until we can see some consistent warm temperatures that typically come in spring and summer,” Tenbult continued.  

“I know residents are seeing potholes out there, and we know that it feels weird talking about this in the middle of January, but we are trying to navigate some of those trouble areas as we can, and we do have our crews out there fixing some holes.” 

She said that road maintenance can be a tricky balancing act, requiring some patience in the moment for the benefit of longer lasting repairs later on. 

The possibility of more snow in the next few months is something else the city is keeping in mind. The past few years have seen Weyburn getting inundated with a major snow event in the late winter, or early spring, which has meant crews needing to implement a major snow removal operation. This year, it hasn’t happened yet, but Tenbult recommends residents be prepared just in case.  

“We encourage our residents to sign up for our alert system because in the event we get dumped on in February or March, and we have to get into residential areas a little bit quicker, then our residents are up to date,” she said.