The street cleaners operate from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. (CBC)

The city of Charlottetown started cleaning its streets a month earlier this year, partly due to safety concerns prompted by a story reported by CBC News last year.

The accident, on May 6, left a woman with a dislocated shoulder, a concussion and a small brain bleed. She lost control of her bike when it went into a large area of sand on the shoulder along North River Road.

Public works manager Paul Johnston said that accident is one reason sweepers are out almost a month earlier this year.

"We continually re-evaluate what we do," said Johnston.

"That incident, we looked at what our possibilities were. This year we're saying it's main drags, which often are the ones with a paved shoulder used by cyclists."

Johnston said roads in the downtown and other popular cycling routes are also on the list. 

"The case last year, certainly, something that we were aware of and we take into consideration, but, you know, not the only factor that we utilize in determining our operation."

The city has also bought a new $166,000 sweeper machine with better scrubbing and suction, making the job a lot quicker. But Johnston warns winter sanding can be heavy, so it can take a couple of passes to get a street completely clean.

The new machine means three cleaners are on the streets. They're running from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Johnston advises people on bikes and motorcycles continue watch for piles of sand for the next month.