Gritters go on full-time standby
With the clocks poised to go back this coming weekend, there’s no turning the tide on the approaching colder temperatures. Nottinghamshire County Council’s Communities and Place Committee chairman, Councillor John Cottee says Notts is ready for whatever the winter brings
Winter maintenance is a high priority for us at Nottinghamshire County Council. Behind the scenes we plan for it all year round, so we’re in a strong position and ready for whatever the winter weather throws at us.
We’re now ready to treat our gritting routes - A and B roads, heavily trafficked major roads and many main bus routes. But whilst we’re well-equipped, like other local authorities, we’re unable to respond to every request for roads and pavements to be gritted.
Our 30-strong gritting fleet are on full 24-hour standby from next week (1 November) should road temperature forecasts be 0°C or below, or if Met Office forecasts suggest moisture will be present to form ice.
Each time the lorries go out, they cover an area equivalent to 100 large football pitches. But as each gritting run can take over three hours, residents should be aware that their roads may be gritted sometime after the circuit starts.
Each gritter has a CCTV system to help monitor road surface conditions as well as being tracked by GPS technology. And our roadside weather stations provide us with high quality weather forecasting information to help monitor road surface conditions.
County-wide winter maintenance operations are based across four depots including one at Gamston – their salt barns are already well-stocked with the county having 10,000 tonnes more salt stockpiled than official government recommendations putting us in an excellent position should we face the worst winter conditions.
Last year felt like a particularly long, harsh winter – who can forget the infamous Beast from the East – and our gritting crews did a sterling job keeping the county moving in tough conditions.
With 117 main route runs and 23 severe weather runs, crews more than doubled the previous season’s tally of 60 runs, clocking up a staggering 142,500 more kilometres than last winter.
And because last year took its toll on our roads, our highways team had to repair 95,000 potholes between January and August - nearly twice as many over the same time period as the previous year.
Rest assured that whatever this winter brings, we’re geared up and ready.
Take a look at our winter webpage (www.nottinghamshire.gov.uk/winter) - it has everything from gritting facts and updates to winter driving advice and is full of advice and information on staying safe and well during colder spells. For gritting updates, also follow Twitter @NottsCC.
Councillor John Cottee, Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council's Communities and Place Committee