Massive clean-up underway after unprecedented snow event

An estimated 30,000 City trees have been damaged

While the unprecedented fall snowstorm has passed, the city-wide clean-up will the ongoing for the foreseeable future.

“We estimated around 30,000 City-owned trees were impacted by the recent snowstorm,” said Martha Barwinsky, City Forester. “While all areas of Winnipeg were impacted, core areas and mature neighbourhoods were more heavily affected.”

The clean-up has been prioritized based on life safety hazards with City crews and contractors doing the work. As of Thursday morning, 311 fielded over 4,301 reports related to trees since the storm began.

Barwinsky is also urging residents to be cautious when around downed trees and fallen branches, avoid parking near them, and be aware of crews working to remove tree debris that has fallen on City property.  

“We’d ask residents to not drive through the work site or around crews on medians or boulevards,” Barwinsky said.

Property owners are responsible for cleaning up any fallen trees or branches that have failed on private property. Debris should not be left on the public boulevard.

“Residents should also not burn or store any wood from elm trees because the elm bark beetle can use the wood as a place to breed,” said Barwinsky. “Ash wood is prohibited from being moved outside of the city limits.”

Instead, residents should bring all tree debris to any of the City’s 4R Winnipeg Depots or the Brady Road Resource Management Facility at no cost.

If a tree is in contact with a power line, residents should call 911 immediately. If a tree is blocking a public right-of-way including a road or sidewalk, but isn’t touching a power line, please call 311. If a tree on public property has fallen, but not touching a power line or blocking the road, residents should contact 311 online.

It’s important residents provide as much accurate detail as possible when providing information so service requests are properly triaged.

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