Despite icy conditions, the city of Reykjavík decided not to sand or salt streets or pavement yesterday. The Road Traffic Directorate says the decision is “strange” and could cause people to have accidents.
As many who walked or drove in the capital yesterday can attest, conditions were very icy, in particular for pedestrians. Despite this, city officials decided not to scatter sand or salt. In a letter to media sources, the city explained that the decision was made due to the fact that sand needs to be swept up once snow and ice have melted, and laying down too much salt can cause environmental problems.
RÚV reports that the Road Traffic Directorate is less than pleased with this explanation.
Einar Magnús Magnússon, the public relations officer for the directorate, says that they had never heard of this justification being used before. “I have to say that we’ve been a bit disappointed with the clean-up with regards to travelers, especially pedestrians. We are very worried about it. And this matter yesterday, all I can say is that it’s very far from being acceptable.”
There has as yet been no word on whether the city will lay down salt or sand on the pavement, or when.