Plymouth geared up to keep roads moving this winter

Gritters will be out on Plymouth’s primary routes this evening, with road surface temperatures forecast to fall below freezing.

Crews from the Council and SWH Group are geared up to keep the city’s roads moving in winter, monitoring the weather closely via a dedicated forecast station and two sensor stations, to ensure roads are pre-treated with salt before temperatures drop and help prevent icy patches from forming.

Six dedicated gritters are on 24-hour standby during the winter season (which runs from the beginning of October to the end of March) to keep the city’s main routes clear.

All the vehicles are fitted with a tracking device that monitors the tonnage of salt used on different parts of the network during each trip.

The city’s salt barn at Prince Rock Depot is stocked with around 1,000 tonnes of salt and the 400 community salt bins around the city have been topped up for people to use locally on public roads and footways in colder weather.

Teams are also ready to respond to other weather-related issues such as fallen trees, blocked gullies and localised flooding – as well as manage traffic flow and help keep road users safe in dark, wet and cold conditions.

Councillor Mark Coker, Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning and Infrastructure, said: “We’re geared up and ready to keep Plymouth’s roads moving when the worst of winter weather hits. Our gritting teams are on standby to go out as soon as temperatures are forecast to drop near or below freezing.”

For regular winter service updates follow @plymhighways on Twitter.

Useful info:

  • A full gritting run covers more than 40 per cent of the city’s road network and takes about three hours
  • Footpaths are not routinely gritted
  • The 400 grit bins around the city can be used by members of the public to treat public roads or footpaths – salt from these bins should not be stockpiled for use on private property
  • Residents who want to treat pavements and driveways in front of their properties should only need a tablespoon of salt for each square metre. Ordinary table salt and dishwasher salt can also be used before the onset of freezing conditions. Residents are always urged to take care
  • Residents should avoid using hot water to clear snow or ice as this freezes and causes even more hazardous conditions