Gritting teams at the ready as amber snow warning issued

The council and its contractors Veolia are ready for the cold weather and snow that is forecast this weekend.

Gritter being loaded with salt

Veolia’s three gritting vehicles will be out this weekend, alongside 122 salt bins across the Borough and over 1,500 tonnes of salt in reserve. You can find a map of salt bins and gritting routes on our winter pages.

The ‘main route’ gritter spreads 9 tonnes of salt per operation and two smaller gritters cover additional routes and both spread 5 tonnes of salt each per operation. They have already been out 21 times since December 2020, spreading over 400 tonnes of salt.

A quad bike with a trailer covers other areas such as the hospital, including COVID-19 testing and vaccination centres, and uses 1 tonne per operation. As well as the roads, Veolia uses small gritting vehicles to keep miles of pavements and walkways safe across the borough.  

Cllr Carole Mulroney, cabinet member for environment and planning, said: “Although we are in a national lockdown and there is less traffic on the road and less people out, keeping Southend moving whatever the weather is crucial for our residents making essential journeys, our businesses, and emergency services, and we are ready to act when the need arises.

“This weekend, priority roads and pavements will be gritted before Saturday evening and Sunday morning when the current forecast is showing sleet and snow. There may also be rain which can wash away some of the grit so we will monitor things carefully to consider the best times to be out gritting.

“Resources will be available at the weekend and into next week and the forecast will be monitored and staff will be deployed as necessary.

“I would like to urge all residents to ensure they check their vehicles and road conditions before setting out on what, at the moment, must be essential journeys only, and even then, if conditions are poor, consider waiting until the weather improves, giving our gritters the ability to treat our roads.”

Published: 5th February 2021

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