Our street maintenance services are preparing for the winter

1.12.2022 10.34
Espoo has plenty of streets that need to be cleared of snow.Photo: Margit Lindholm

On the basis of the experiences of the previous winter, an expansive development programme has been launched to improve the quality of winter maintenance and to raise the level of preparedness.

An additional budget of EUR 1.5 million has been proposed for the street maintenance budget of 2023. It is primarily focused on winter maintenance and equipment investments. The additional budget enables better preparedness for unusually challenging weather conditions.

Development of human resources

Human resource planning measures will be made more precise through transfers and by training operators in the use of different machinery. This supports avoiding the possible under-utilisation of machinery. Despite the labour shortage in the operator market, we have managed to hire people to replace those who have left and for temporary positions. The night-time stand-by pilot was successful; additional labour could be called from other units when needed on snowy evenings.

The working hours and stand-by system of human resources and maintenance services will be developed further.

Increasing of equipment and cooperation

Equipment has been replaced in accordance with the investment programme, but there is still a lot of older equipment. Measures to avoid unanticipated stoppage days are being developed in cooperation with the suppliers of repair and maintenance services.

The machines and vehicles of Espoo’s own construction will be used for tasks such as clearing and transporting the snow in bus stops. The competitive tendering organised for earth-moving transports and machines has taken into account the option of using the equipment for winter maintenance tasks.

A pilot concerning the snow clearance and slipperiness prevention on the pedestrian and bicycle lanes in Matinkylä will be implemented with Matinkylän Huolto in relation to the maintenance of properties.

We will allocate resources for preparing an equipment strategy. The impacts will become evident in the next few years. The aim is to find efficient equipment and systems that support the operations.

Enhancing performance

The use of the ‘unauthorised use of the area’ fine aims to prevent people from transferring snow from plots to the street, which in turn ensures that streets remain an accessible work area.

Notices to move vehicles and moving the vehicles to a nearby location will be implemented in an enhanced manner in cooperation with parking control. The spreading of work sites will be monitored in cooperation with the control unit for area usage.

Transport companies take care of transporting the snow to the Vanttila snow dump.Photo: Margit Lindholm

The Vanttila snow dump is available to private persons and housing companies upon agreement with transport companies. The city also has temporary storing and piling points for snow. Plans for melting snow on special sites have also been prepared.

The location system of machines and devices has been improved in cooperation with customer services. The functionality of information flow and communications will be developed so that customer services and communications have an adequate overall image of the situation and the persons responsible and employees of maintenance services can focus on their core tasks. 

The measures now being implemented are expected to be enough to alleviate the situation, even during winters with unusual weather conditions. Better precautions and improved allocation of all available resources to maintenance during busy times are key measures. Development will continue in the coming years.

Further information:

Winter maintenance on a map(external link)
Homestreet Portal(external link)
The Vanttila snow dump



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