The Municipality of Kincardine is committed to public safety at all times, including in the event of severe weather.

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Before You Travel

Is your travel essential or can it wait until the weather improves? Before you head out on winter roads, check:

Tune into your favourite local media outlets, too: radio, television, and online. They're great at getting the word out to the community quickly about cancellations and closures.

Significant Weather Event

We declare a Significant Weather Event when a weather hazard, either forecasted or occurring, has the potential to pose a danger to anyone using roadways over which the Municipality of Kincardine has authority.

The declaration isn't a highway closure. It means you may need to use more caution when travelling on our roadways as it might take us longer than usual to maintain or improve road conditions.

One of the first places we'll post a declaration is on our Facebook page, so following us is a great idea.

How do we decide to declare a Significant Weather Event?

Staff make this decision using radar, forecast monitoring, and road conditions. Their decision considers things like: 

  • Significant snow accumulation during a 24 hour period;
  • Ice formation that occues with no warning from the weather forecast;
  • High winds leading to large snow drifts; and/or
  • Cold temperatures in which de-icing operations would not be effective.

When do we end a Significant Weather Event?

Staff continues to monitor conditions throughout the event. Once we are able to again meet our winter maintenance standards, we will declare the Significant Weather Event to have ended.

Where does the authority to declare a Significant Weather Event come from?

As per Regulation 239/02 of the Municipal Act 2001, an Ontario municipality may declare a significant weather event when a weather hazard is approaching or occurring and has the potential to pose a significant danger to users of the highways over which they have authority.

This declaration suspends the standard timelines required for municipalities to meet their winter maintenance objectives until the municipality declares the significant weather event has ended. 

Winter Road Safety

To drive or not to drive in wintery weather is a big decision. Ask yourself do you really need to travel, is it safe, and is it worth the risk? It’s okay to stay where you are. Abandoned vehicles could be towed and fined.

For winter road conditions in Bruce County, call 1-866-266-7569 or use the links listed at the top of the page for 511 and Bruce County.

If you are planning on travelling during the winter, here are some helpful tips:

  • Prepare for quickly changing conditions by having working winter tires, windshield wipers, and washer fluid. Stock your vehicle Emergency kit with a shovel, blanket, booster cables, flashlight, and more. Check road conditions and give yourself extra travel time. 
  • Avoid collisions by removing all snow and ice from your roof and windows, ensure windshield wipers are in working order, turn taillights on, reduce speed, leave extra space, avoid sudden braking and accelerating. Slippery conditions require caution. See and be seen! 
  • When there’s ice and snow, be patient and take it slow. Snow plow equipment travels at 25 to 60 kilometers an hour working to keep roads safe. Passing a snow plow is never encouraged. If you pass, ensure adequate distance, road conditions, and space to return. 
  • Police close roads for safety. Do not drive on closed roads. In a whiteout, don’t stop on the roadway. Find a driveway or parking lot to pull into. Vehicles parked or abandoned on roadways can be towed and fined. 

Winter Parking

Parking between the hours of 2 and 6 a.m. on Municipality of Kincardine roads and in Municipal parking lots is prohibited from November 1st through April 30th.

This helps our Operations Staff keep our roads clear of snow and debris. Be aware that if you're parked on a Municipal road or in a Municipal parking lot during those times, you vehicle may be towed without warning and at your expense.

Winter Around Your Home

Don't dump your snow on the road.

It is an offence to deposit snow on roadways.

The Highway Traffic Act, RSO, 1990, c.H.8, s 181 states that: “No person shall deposit snow or ice on a roadway without permission in writing to do so from the Ministry or road authority responsible for the maintenance of the road.”

Inspect and clean.

  • While you're out shoveling, clear around the exterior vents on your home. This can help prevent a blockage that could cause a Carbon Monoxide issue.
  • Have your heating appliances regularly inspected, especially fireplaces. The Ontario Fire Code requires that: Every chimney, flue and flue pipe shall be inspected to identify any dangerous condition
    (a) at intervals not greater than 12 months,
    (b) at the time of addition of any appliance, and
    (c) after any chimney fire.
  • You'll also want to check your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide alarms to make sure they're in good working order.

Are the fire hydrants accessible?

Make sure the fire hydrant closest to your home isn't blocked or covered by snow. In the event of an emergency, the easier it is for Emergency Services to locate and access the hydrant, the more effective their response can be.

Helpful Resources

Travel Tips

No matter what the season, use caution while driving. Here's a few more tips to help keep you and your passengers safe:

  • Don't Text and Drive! Distracted driving is a serious safety issue that has claimed lives. Every driver has a responsibility to focus on the road, traffic, and driving conditions. Pull over to communicate and don't put yourself and others at risk. Texting and driving is against the law.
  • Deciding to pass is a serious decision. Use your turn signals, consider conditions and obstacles, and look for approaching vehicles and vehicles passing from behind. Pavement lines are simply a guide and could be snow-covered. When there is ice and snow, take it slow.
  • Don't veer for deer or other animals. Brake firmly but stay in your lane. Collisions occur when a driver swerves and loses control. Be on the lookout, prepare for the unexpected, and slow down in areas marked with animal activity signs.
  • Protect emergency services personnel responding to incidents on the roadside. Slow down and proceed with caution when an emergency vehicle or tow truck is roadside with lights activated. Obey the law, move over, and stay safe! Offenders may get fines or demerit points.
  • Slow-moving horse-drawn vehicles are common in our area. When passing from behind or the opposite direction, slow down and create as much distance as possible. Don’t use your horn or pass too closely. This may dangerously startle the horse. Expect the unexpected!