What is winter service?
Winter service is snow and ice clearance, or the precautionary spreading of salt on highways to prevent ice from forming. As a caring council we wish to reduce the impact bad weather has on residents and users of the borough’s highways by achieiving the following aims:
- Minimise the loss of life and injury to highway users, including pedestrians, and preventing damage to vehicles and other property.
- Keep the highway free from obstruction and thereby avoid unnecessary hinderance to travel.
Grit boxes are filled up prior to the winter period. They are continualy filled as/when needed.
All the boxes are located where we have steep gradients or difficult junctions within the borough. The locations are agreed annually by cabinet as are the gritting routes. The boxes are for the sole use of local residents in that particular street. The grit can be used on the highway or pavement (not on drives).
What can I expect from winter service?
The full winter service started operating on 1 November and will cease operating on 31 March 2013. A limited response to bad weather will also be available in April.
The total length of roads in the borough is approximately 532 miles (856km) of which 218 miles (351km) are salted; this is equivalent to 41% of the roads in the borough.
Footways and minor roads are not routinely treated, but snow and ice removal is undertaken if possible where normal council duties are prevented, such as road repairs or grounds maintenance.
How does it work?
We receive weather forecasts from the MeteoGroup UK Road Cast service, which uses data from road sensors throughout the West Midlands. The decision to spread salt on roads depends on a number of factors, not just air temperature. We follow the procedure recommended in the Code of Practice for Maintenance Management – Well-maintained Highways.
What do you expect from me?
- Remember rules 203-206 in the Highway Code about driving in icy and snowy weather; they help to ensure your safety and that of other road users and pedestrians
- Please ensure that your vehicle is serviced for the winter with enough anti-freeze, tyres with the right depth of tread, and effective windscreen wipers and washers
- In bad weather listen to local traffic and weather reports before your journey, and then consider if your journey is essential
- In poor conditions keep your speed down, use dipped headlights, look out for vulnerable road users such as pedestrians and cyclists and leave plenty of room in front of you – up to ten times the normal distance may be required if you have to stop
- Be aware that a road may not be treated along its whole length and that treatment does not guarantee that the road is free of ice and snow
Engineering and Transportation
2nd floor, Civic Centre