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Spring snow melt

Frozen culverts and drainage concerns

With the warmer temperatures, crews are responding to concerns about frozen culverts and blocked ditches.

Locations are prioritized as follows:

1. Flooding to private homes/infrastructure
2. Flooding and potential damage to public infrastructure
3. Water in ditch and/or on land without risk to infrastructure

Please report any issues through County Connect or call Transportation and Agriculture Services at 780-417-7100.

Freeze-thaw cycles are common during winter months. Melting snow drains from roofs, yards and driveways and can create icy conditions when temperatures freeze again. Melting snow and ice from roadways can build up and plug the gutter causing water to puddle and run up and over sidewalks.

In early spring, underground stormwater pipes from catch basins can freeze. This may cause a blockage and prevent water from draining from streets. If you notice a frozen storm drain please contact Transportation and Agriculture Services through County Connect.

How to manage freeze/thaw conditions

  • Spread sand/gravel to give pedestrians traction. Free rock chips are available throughout Strathcona County.
  • Keep sidewalks and gutters clear of snow
  • Don’t shovel snow on the road to prevent build up around gutters and drains.

Spring stormwater odours

Stormwater moving through the storm drains may have a rotten egg odour due to vegetation breakdown from the stormwater ponds. Once spring thaw is over, the odours will disappear.

You can help!

Keep stormwater drains clear.  Removing snow and ice from  drains during the winter will help them do their job in the spring. Clearing away debris will also improve water flow to these areas.

Prepare for the melt. Ensure your eavestrough, sump pump drain and weeping tile are in working order to prepare for the "big thaw." If you notice your sump pump discharge is spilling water out of the riser pipe coming out of the ground next to your house, the sump pump discharge line may be frozen. Attach an open trough to the line and direct the water at least 1.5 metres away from your foundation. Once the ground thaws, the discharge pipe will return to normal and you can remove the trough. 

Transportation and Agriculture Services
Drainage issues
Phone: 780-417-7100

Sump pumps, sewer backup and flooded basements
Phone: 780-467-7785 (24 hrs)

Last updated: Wednesday, August 23, 2017
Page ID: 39889