Gritters gear up for frosty forecast

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Council’s gritting crews are preparing to take to the road again tomorrow night, Tuesday 6th Janury, with temperatures set to drop once more after today’s milder spell.

Although tomorrow daytime is forecast to be cloudy with outbreaks of rain, the evening is likely to become clear and cold, with the chance of hoar frost overnight and patchy ice possible.

This winter is already looking like being busier than last year when gritting crews only went out 67 times in total between 1st November and early April.

Already this season, the teams have completed 29 runs – the first time being on Bonfire Night – including 13 consecutive runs over the festive break between Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve.

During the winter of 2012/13 the crews completed 130 runs, using a total of 23,370 tonnes of salt.

Following the Boxing Day snowfall, gritting crews completed six runs in the space of 24 hours on all A and B roads and main bus routes.

In addition snow ploughs were fitted to four vehicles and over the days which followed the crews carried out further runs and, where capacity allowed, salted footpaths, particularly in more heavily pedestrianised areas such as those within shopping centres or outside doctors’ surgeries.

Teams were also busy responding to calls from the emergency services to grit in areas which are not main routes but where vehicles had run into difficulties.

Many Highways staff came in on their days off over the Christmas period to contribute to the effort.

The council is urging people to do their bit during any wintry spell and help clear residential roads, paths and pavements by following the Government’s Snow Code – which gives clear advice on clearing snow and ice safely.