It may be relatively mild at the moment, but Wiltshire Council is ready to keep the roads clear this winter when the temperatures drop. Here are 10 things you may not know about gritting season.
- Wiltshire Council has 24 gritters at the ready to treat our primary network – that is 25% of the county’s roads including primary A and B roads, and 50% of the network in severe conditions
- The gritters will cover 726 miles from our eight strategically located depots, spreading 150 tonnes of salt each time they go out on the primary network
- Salt, not grit, is spread, and 14,000 tonnes is held in stock at the start of the winter season
- Weather stations are strategically placed around the county these give real time information and assist in producing accurate forecasts so helping to ensure gritters are sent out at the right time
- A dedicated team of duty engineers monitors the weather 24/7 during the season and is supported by highways staff and a team of 24 drivers who are on standby throughout to be called into action at any time. Farmers and other specialist contractors are also on standby to help their communities with snow ploughing
- 1,600 salt bins are being filled for use on local, lightly used roads and pavements, parish and town councils which have requested them have also given 1 tonne bags of rock salt for community use
- The council has invested in six new tractors which can assist in winter maintenance
- Last winter the gritters went out 60 times
- 7,326 tonnes of salt was spread on Wiltshire’s roads last season (2014/15)
Wiltshire Council has a dry run at the start of each winter season, during the run no salt is spread, but residents will see gritters out and about on the designated gritting network during the day as drivers familiarise themselves with the route.