Spring cleaning isn’t just for home; we do it on our roads too!
Over the colder, snowy months, winter abrasives have accumulated along the shoulders of our roads. We’re hoping winter’s done with us but there may yet be a few more weeks to come – depending on where you live.
We are watching the weather and as soon as spring firmly takes hold, crews will be out sweeping away the reminder of how cold and long winter has been this year. Expect to see sweepers on our provincial highways soon (if you haven’t already).
Sweeping operations move at about 50km/h. As such, they can cover large distances and there may be significant gaps between the advanced warning signs and when you encounter the actual sweeper. They also typically straddle the right hand shoulder and lane. So stay alert for sweepers ahead, watch for the flashing lights on the top and back of the sweeper unit and never attempt to pass on the right. On narrow two lane segments, sweeper operators will often pull off to the side to allow passing when there is enough room.
Sweeping can also create dust. Water is applied to reduce the amount of dust created during the sweeping process, but you should always approach sweepers with caution and pass with care.
The maintenance contractor’s sweep, on average, 56,000 km of road each year – that equals enough road to make 4.5 round trips between Vancouver, BC and Charlottetown, PEI.