Sarnia has hired a local company to provide backup snowplow service this winter.
Sevcon Paving was awarded the two-year, $96,500 contract recently, which includes a flat fee of $41,500 to have six plows ready on standby.
The total cost of the private service will vary based on the number and severity of snowstorms.
The city has enough plows for normal conditions, but during severe storms relies on private contractors to meet minimum snow clearance timelines.
But the city has found private operators are often contractually obligated to other customers and weren’t available to help clear the roads.
The change is expected to improve snow removal times and is cheaper than buying more plows for the city fleet, staff say.