Activities – November to April
The department’s work crews are predominately involved in winter maintenance activities, namely snowplowing and sanding the roads. The department operates on two 8 hour shifts Monday to Friday with each shift alternating week ends on-call. The morning shift begins at 4am and the afternoon shift takes over at 12:30pm. The snow plow routes are designed so that each route can be treated twice in one shift. The County Roads snowplow routes are patrolled on two 10 hour shifts 7 days a week. To maximize efficiencies some County Roads are winter maintained by Municipal Roads Departments. The following is a list of these roads:
- CR# County Road Municipal Road Department
- CR#20 Horseshoe Lake Road Minden Hills
- CR#2 Deep Bay Road Minden Hills
- CR#19 Harburn Road Dysart et al
- CR#11 Kushog Lake Road Algonquin Highlands
- CR#12 Livingstone Lake Road Algonquin Highlands
- CR#8 Kawagama Lake Road Algonquin Highlands
- CR#39 Dorset Main Street Algonquin Highlands
When the crews are not plowing snow or sanding the roads they are kept busy clearing drainage ditches and culverts of ice, cutting brush and danger trees from the right of way, installing signs, maintaining the equipment and refurbishing summer equipment.
Through the winter months engineering and administration staff monitor the winter maintenance operations and record costs, material use, public inquiries, etc. The office is also busy preparing for the next summers road work; tenders, environmental approvals, cost estimates, budget preparation, equipment replacement, material inventory, yearly licensing, preparation for legislated training etc.
During the spring break up all roads are inspected and deficiencies are recorded and entered into a “Needs Inventory”. This Needs Study itemizes all the County Roads and those elements that make up a road. The study consists of a data base with many analytical formulae which have been developed for use throughout the province. Regular spring up-dates keep the database current, and analysis of this data prioritizes the work that is to be done.
By mid March the yearly budget for the department is set and final preparation for the work is carried out.
Activities – May to October
In early spring the department re-calls seasonal staff to carry out the summers construction and maintenance work. The department also teams up with the local Municipal Roads Departments, sharing manpower, equipment and materials. Road construction projects are scheduled throughout the spring summer and fall depending on the type of work being done. In early April the department publishes a list of construction jobs planned for the year in local news papers.