City snow desk to open

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

You've heard of a weather desk on television. But have you heard about a snow desk? If residents get snowed under this winter, they can call the city's snow desk to get updates on the progress of workers cleaning up the streets.

Brian Shynal, Hamilton's director of operations and maintenance, said the snow desk will be operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week for 22 weeks to provide snow information to residents.

"It will be a single point of contact for residents, and will monitor, track and report on winter weather," he said.

Snow and weather information will also be available at the city's website www.myhamilton.ca.

The snow desk is one of a number of improvements the city has made to its winter control operation, which has received severe criticism over the last few years from residents and councillors for its poor performance.

Last year, residents flooded city phone lines, complaining about their roads not being plowed or asking questions about winter control operations. Some became frustrated after being put on hold, or "bounced" to another department. They ended up hanging up. "There will be less bouncing of calls," said Shynal. "It will improve accountability."

Staff will track complaints through the snow desk, said Wray Oakes, manager of roads, so the city can address areas of concerns.

"We are striving for 100 per cent satisfaction," he said. "I don't know if we will ever achieve it."

Other initiatives staff will implement this winter include improvements to the service contract (up for tender after April, 2006), a better salt management program that reduces the amount of salt used and adds liquid salt brine, a more effective snow fence policy and a better way to remove and store snow.

Hamilton's snow budget is expected to be about $17.7 million this year, rise to $19.6 million next year and level off at about $22 million in 2007.

City snow desk to open

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

You've heard of a weather desk on television. But have you heard about a snow desk? If residents get snowed under this winter, they can call the city's snow desk to get updates on the progress of workers cleaning up the streets.

Brian Shynal, Hamilton's director of operations and maintenance, said the snow desk will be operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week for 22 weeks to provide snow information to residents.

"It will be a single point of contact for residents, and will monitor, track and report on winter weather," he said.

Snow and weather information will also be available at the city's website www.myhamilton.ca.

The snow desk is one of a number of improvements the city has made to its winter control operation, which has received severe criticism over the last few years from residents and councillors for its poor performance.

Last year, residents flooded city phone lines, complaining about their roads not being plowed or asking questions about winter control operations. Some became frustrated after being put on hold, or "bounced" to another department. They ended up hanging up. "There will be less bouncing of calls," said Shynal. "It will improve accountability."

Staff will track complaints through the snow desk, said Wray Oakes, manager of roads, so the city can address areas of concerns.

"We are striving for 100 per cent satisfaction," he said. "I don't know if we will ever achieve it."

Other initiatives staff will implement this winter include improvements to the service contract (up for tender after April, 2006), a better salt management program that reduces the amount of salt used and adds liquid salt brine, a more effective snow fence policy and a better way to remove and store snow.

Hamilton's snow budget is expected to be about $17.7 million this year, rise to $19.6 million next year and level off at about $22 million in 2007.

City snow desk to open

News Nov 22, 2006 Flamborough Review

You've heard of a weather desk on television. But have you heard about a snow desk? If residents get snowed under this winter, they can call the city's snow desk to get updates on the progress of workers cleaning up the streets.

Brian Shynal, Hamilton's director of operations and maintenance, said the snow desk will be operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week for 22 weeks to provide snow information to residents.

"It will be a single point of contact for residents, and will monitor, track and report on winter weather," he said.

Snow and weather information will also be available at the city's website www.myhamilton.ca.

The snow desk is one of a number of improvements the city has made to its winter control operation, which has received severe criticism over the last few years from residents and councillors for its poor performance.

Last year, residents flooded city phone lines, complaining about their roads not being plowed or asking questions about winter control operations. Some became frustrated after being put on hold, or "bounced" to another department. They ended up hanging up. "There will be less bouncing of calls," said Shynal. "It will improve accountability."

Staff will track complaints through the snow desk, said Wray Oakes, manager of roads, so the city can address areas of concerns.

"We are striving for 100 per cent satisfaction," he said. "I don't know if we will ever achieve it."

Other initiatives staff will implement this winter include improvements to the service contract (up for tender after April, 2006), a better salt management program that reduces the amount of salt used and adds liquid salt brine, a more effective snow fence policy and a better way to remove and store snow.

Hamilton's snow budget is expected to be about $17.7 million this year, rise to $19.6 million next year and level off at about $22 million in 2007.