The Akureyri town council has approved an additional ISK 50 million ($420,139/€366,803) to be budgeted for snow removal this year, RÚV reports.
The beginning of December was unusually snowy in the north of Iceland, which has at least yielded the unexpected side benefit of allowing local ski slopes to open early for the season. However, the continuing wintery deluge over the last week also means that many Akureyri streets have been completely impassable for several days.
Town officials obviously can’t predict how much snowfall they’ll get each year, which makes accurately budgeting for snow removal a difficult prospect. ISK 109 million ($915,639/€799,721) had previously been allocated for snow removal, but ISK 95 million ($798,025/€697,004) had already been utilised by the beginning of January and it was clear that the remaining ISK 14 million ($117,603/€102,709) would not be sufficient to address the task.
As it stands, an average of 30 snow ploughs are working every day to remove the snow, which costs the town an average of ISK 4 million ($33,608/€29,355) a day. According to figures presented in a town council memo on the subject, at its deepest points, the snow in Akureyri currently stands at 105cm (41in) deep and authorities expect that it will take at least ten days to clear.