City borrows big plow from Big Apple

By: Patrick Butler

It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Ottawa's newest super-plow!

City officials began test-driving a garbage truck/snow-plow crossover on city streets Thursday.

Councillor Keith Egli, the chair of the city's transportation committee, said while the City is only responsible for about 50 per cent of residential snow-clearing, he wants to see how the machine, on loan from New York City, could work in different conditions around Ottawa.

“We want to see if there are cost efficiencies with using one vehicle in two different ways, but it’s also a service piece as well,” said Egli.

“If we have a really bad snowstorm, like we had a few days ago, it could give us additional pieces of equipment that we could get out on the street.”

While in Ottawa, the hybrid truck won’t be used for collecting waste – only for clearing snow, and only in residential areas.

Egli said it's too soon to say how the vehicle is faring, but he hopes it could soon find its way into the city's snow-clearing arsenal.