Saskatoon battles dangerous ice formations, claims 'icicle capital' status
Published Tuesday, March 5, 2013 9:56AM EST
Saskatoon is dealing with an apparent icicle outbreak, with at least two massive ice formations causing headaches for city officials in recent days.
The latest culprit is a three-storey-high icy mass clinging to the side of a building on Eighth Street in the city's downtown. The icicle stretches the full height of the building, wraps around the corner and hangs over the parking garage.
Emergency service officials are keeping a close eye on the large and potentially dangerous ice mass, which could put passersby at risk.
"It could be an insulation issue with the structure, lots of snow, lots of heat. I don't know what the combination is really, but we seem to be becoming the icicle capital around here," Bill Coffin of Saskatoon Fire and Protection Services said.
But this ice formation hasn't yet achieved the near-star status of an icicle last week that formed on the side of a building on Avenue W in west-end Saskatoon.
Initially reaching a height of more than 12 metres, the icicle stubbornly refused to be removed.
On Friday the building's owner was served with an order requiring the removal of the formation within 24 hours. But crews were forced to abandon their attempts after chipping away roughly half of it.
Bigger machinery was expected to arrive at the scene early this week to help crews complete the job.
That icicle even acquired its own Twitter account -- providing a running commentary on its battle to survive, but in the end acknowledging its demise was "inevitable."
"I knew all along that if a crew didn't take me out, spring would. #beingbrave," stated a tweet from the account @gianticicle.
Anyone who spots a potentially dangerous icicle is advised to call the city's property hotline, and inspectors will be sent to the location.
With a report from CTV Saskatoon's Matt Young