Snow and Ice Removal

During the winter, campus roadways, parking lots, sidewalks and walkways are kept free of ice and snow as best possible, as resources and weather conditions dictate. All reasonable efforts will be made to keep roadways, parking lots, and walkways in acceptable condition for pedestrian and vehicular traffic.

Please report any hazardous conditions by contacting Facilities Management at (250)807-9272 or facilities.ok@ubc.ca.

Winter Weather Brings to Light Seasonal Safety Issues

During winter, Facilities Management is busy keeping the outdoor walkways and parking lots free of ice and snow to prevent slips and falls. Slips and falls are a major cause of injury not only on the UBC campus but in all parts of the city.

When the snow hits, Facilities Management sweeps away snow from walkways and parking lots while depositing ice melt and sand. Areas are prioritized according to high traffic areas, terrain (stairs, inclines, etc), and areas with a past history of incidents/accidents. Please contact the Facilities Management office at  (250)807-9272 or facilities.ok@ubc.ca to report slippery areas.

Using these strategies, Facilities Management is able to manage much of the hazards brought on by ice and snow, but it is impossible to cover all areas. The departments of Health, Safety and Environment and Facilities Management would like to highlight strategies pedestrians can use to prevent falling victim (no pun intended) to slippery conditions.

We have all heard of winterizing our cars and our driving habits, but what about winterizing our walking habits? Here are a few tips to help you stay upright during the winter season.

Adjust your gait

Shorten your stride length to keep your centre of gravity supported. Also, walk with your knees slightly bent, as locking your knees reduces your ability to adjust to a slip. When turning avoid sharp turns.

Slow down

Take slow, deliberate steps and be on the lookout for icy spots. Place your whole foot down at once, shifting your weight slowly to this foot before stepping with the other foot.

Balance your load

Consider donning a backpack. Backpacks keep your load closer to your centre of gravity. Carrying heavy items in your hands hinders your arms’ ability to provide balance when you do slip. You need your arms free to help you recover your balance if you start to slide. Do not walk with your hands in your pockets for this very same reason.

Wear appropriate footwear

Footwear with a thick rubber or non-slip sole is recommended. Avoid wearing heels and footwear with minimal tread.

Entering/exiting your vehicle

Take care when stepping into/out of your car as you are usually off balance and on only one foot. This increases your chance of slipping. Consider carrying a bag of sand in your vehicle that you can sprinkle on the ground before exiting the vehicle.

Snow covered curbs

Exercise caution around snow covered curbs on paths and roadways.

Entering / exiting buildings

Entrance ways may be slippery, exercise caution and report any missing floor mats to Facilities.

Snow removal equipment

Our winter equipment is fully operational during early morning & daytime hours whenever a snowfall occurs.  We are requesting staff and students be aware of moving equipment and be cognisant of the potential risk for pedestrians walking in front of and/or behind operating equipment.