Winnipeg driver blames unplowed road's ruts for crash
A Winnipeg woman says she'll have to pay for a car crash that she and others believe was caused by a city street in need of snow clearing.
Traci Booth says she lost control of her car on Monday afternoon because of deep, snow-packed and ice-slicked ruts on Overdale Street.
"We're at the mercy of these roads in the city, and we pay high taxes and these roads are never cleared," Booth told CBC News.
"On Overdale Street, not only were the ruts deep, but it was pure ice underneath. So you really have no choice but to slip and slide all over the place."
Celena Glesmann, whose SUV was hit in the crash, agreed that the streets are a problem.
"It's not safe," she said.
Booth said when she filed her claim with Manitoba Public Insurance, she was told she can expect to be found at fault for the incident.
That will cost her five demerit points plus the cost of two deductibles, she said.
Alison Minaker, who lives near the crash scene, said she felt angry about the condition of the road.
"I said, 'I'm so angry, I feel so bad for you.' And that's when she said, 'I wasn't going remotely fast,'" Minaker said.
Residential plowing starts Tuesday
The City of Winnipeg announced that residential street-clearing will begin Tuesday evening and run for the rest of the week.
However, Minaker said the ruts on Overdale have been there for weeks.
Booth said she's waiting for crews to clear snow from the street where she lives.
"I can't even tell you how long we waited for our road to be cleared last year on my street, and I think it was cleared once — maybe twice — all winter long," she said.
"It hasn't been cleared yet. Our road is atrocious; it's a skating rink."
Overdale isn't the only problem street: River Heights-Fort Garry Coun. John Orlikow said he's been hearing complaints everywhere he goes.
And while Orlikow said he's happy plows are coming to residential streets, questions still remain.
"It should have started earlier," he said.
"Is it a budgetary issue? I don't know, because I know that our budget line for snow clearing had drained out a long time ago."
Other Winnipeggers said they wanted their streets cleared after a winter storm dumped lots of snow on the city last week.
But Jim Berezowsky, the city's street maintenance manager, said there's a reason why officials waited.
"We were trying to ensure that the emergency passability areas were addressed first, and that we got the lanes taken care of throughout the weekend, so that we could make the decision on a residential clearing operation today," he said.