On Your Side: Slipping on ice
Published Thursday, February 2, 2012 2:56PM EST
Last Updated Thursday, June 7, 2012 2:28PM EDT
MONTREAL- Last February Karen Birkett took her dog for a walk and wound up almost unconscious, like all Montrealers at least once a winter she slipped on the ice.
Birkett didn't blame the ice, she blamed the Lachine borough.
"I fell, I went backwards and smacked my head right on the pavement and I fell very very hard," said Birkett.
The 10th Avenue resident was brought to a clinic, several stitches and bruises later she was released.
"There were people there with sprained and broken ankles," said Birkett. "There were lots of falls that particular day."
Maurice Chubry, Birkett's neighbour across the avenue, agreed.
"They're not giving enough service. Look at it. They should be out here!" said Chubry.
Both have lived on 10th Avenue for many years and say they've never seen sidewalks this bad.
"You can't walk down the street even to mail a letter," said Birkett. "I really think it has to do with budget, they're trying to save on manpower hours."
According to the Lachine borough, ice-control efforts were actually increased this winter, with nearly $19 million spent on public works.
"This is my second winter season here and we actually increased our output," said Martin Savard, the head of Lachine's public works. "This is a fairly unique season."
While Savard admitted that complaints were up, he blamed the slippery sidewalks on this winter season's vicious thaw-freeze cycle.
"It's really hard to walk on these sidewalks but overall it's OK. It's just today it's like a really complicated weather," said Cesar Herrera, a mail carrier for Canada Post.
Herrera admitted that some areas, like 10th Avenue, did seem to get less attention than they should.
In December, La Presse reported that the City of Montreal had to pay citizens $2.2 million for injurious falls over the past two years.