British Columbia

Ice Melt hot commodity in Vancouver as forecasted second snowstorm draws near

With a second snow event expected to hit Vancouver on Thursday, it appears salt and Ice Melt are in short supply.

Environment Canada issued a special weather statement for Thursday afternoon

Salt on the sidewalk outside the Central Library building in downtown Vancouver on Jan. 4, 2016. (Lisa Johnson/CBC)

With a second snowstorm expected to hit Vancouver Thursday, it appears salt and Ice Melt are in short supply. 

CBC Vancouver contacted Walmart, Superstore, Canadian Tire and Home Depot locations in Vancouver, and none had any in stock. 

"I was looking for a snow shovel and some salt to get rid of the ice," said Alex Heath outside the Canadian Tire at Cambie Street and West 8th Avenue. "I found the shovel, but have no salt."

He said he was unable to clear the sidewalk outside his house Monday when Metro Vancouver was hit with its first major snowfall in nearly three years, and now is hopeful more snow won't come. 

"It's a sheet of ice right now .. I've got a nice metal shovel, and maybe use table salt? We'll see."

Customers at the Canadian Tire near Grandview Highway and Rupert Street in Vancouver line up for salt. On Wednesday, the store was limiting customers to two bags each. (Matt Hinton)

Environment Canada issued a special weather statement for Metro Vancouver, the Sunshine Coast, Fraser Valley and all of Vancouver Island Tuesday afternoon, warning of an "intense Pacific storm" that "will likely bring significant snowfall ... from late Thursday afternoon through to Friday morning."

By Friday morning, the snow may turn into rain at lower elevations.

The City of Vancouver says it is ready for the anticipated extra snow, with crews and equipment on standby.

On Tuesday, officials reminded property owners and tenants that they are responsible for clearing snow and ice from their sidewalk by 10 a.m. the day after a snowfall, and could face fines if they fail to do so. 

The fine for single family and duplex homes is $250 per offence and can rise to a maximum of $2,000 for businesses and apartment buildings.