Crews are out today throughout the City clearing ice from roads, sidewalks, catch basins and bus stops.  Other teams will be out filling potholes.

In residential areas, residents may see a combination of plows and/or graders and/or backhoes that are working to clear snow and to open catch basins. 

In some areas, plowing would lead to snow and ice being pushed into basins – so most residents will see graders or backhoes out instead of plows.  Our operators have a plan for clearing that will allow them to work in identified areas to manage water, or to clear roads so that problem areas do not develop.

In most areas, the focus is on opening up the centre of the roadway. If we clear to the curb any built up ice would leave a drop off on the end of the residents entrance making it difficult to access. By clearing the centre of roads, we open it up for water to flow away. Residents should find that by opening the centre of the road, they have a smoother path down their local street.

We anticipate water will pool in some areas.  Residents can help reduce the impact of pooling water by helping to clear blocked catch basins or requesting assistance online.

We will have teams out all weekend to manage pooling water, and other crews to continue to fill the potholes.

Our pothole crews are focused on filling the potholes on major roads and arterials, and any potholes that have been identified as an emergency repair.  Residents can report potholes at

Pothole crews create temporary patches on road surfaces.  First, they clear the hole of water and debris, then fill it with asphalt, then press or tamp it down to create a surface that vehicles can travel on. (Graphics attached)

Did you know?

  • We have filled 39,459 potholes since January 1, 2019.
  • We have more than 100,000 catch basins in the City of Ottawa.


Managing Water:

The spring melt happens each year.  Residents can keep their houses protected, by clearing drainage spouts near their home, and ensuring they are pointed away from the house.  More tips and information about protecting your home can be found online.

Some residents may wish to use sandbags around their home.  As in previous years, the City continues to have sand and sand bags available at select City yards if residents require them.  Residents are required to fill and transport their own sandbags – while we provide the sand and sandbags, we do not have the resources to fill or transport them for residents.

Our work on the Rideau River is continuing.  Teams have made significant progress in breaking the ice.  The River flow is fairly low, so staff are monitoring the ice to make sure it does not jam.  Their work will continue in the coming weeks and is critical to keeping local homes safe from flooding.

Should conditions change, we have a plan for response.  We work closely with our Office of Emergency Management, as well as local Conservation Authorities to monitor and address any unusual water conditions. 


Resident support:

  • We appreciate the support of residents who can clear a catch basin near their home – this supports the flow of water off roads and sidewalks.
  • The best way for residents to report potholes or water pooling due to blocked catch basins is online at  This is the fastest way to get service because the request is sent directly to the nearest yard for follow-up. 
  • Please do not call and fill-out an online request – only one is necessary.