23 February 2018

Council prepared for frost, ice and snow

The city's winter service team will be treating the primary road network throughout the day as snowy conditions continue. Temperatures are set to remain freezing and the cold snap is forecast to continue until the end of this week with the possibility of further snow showers.  See the latest forecast

Our winter service team is monitoring the weather and road conditions 24/7. They use the latest weather technology, using specific local forecasts that are updated three times over a 24 hour period so that they can make the most appropriate decisions when treating the highway network needed to keep the city moving and connected.

We treat almost 50% of all roads, including all A and B roads, every bus route and access areas to emergency centres such as hospitals, ensuring they are safe and passable during adverse weather conditions.

Councillor Gill Mitchell, chair of the environment, transport and sustainability committee, said: “Our staff have been busy responding to  this developing spell of cold weather. Our gritters are going out overnight and during the day to pre-treat the roads and we are also ready to react to more severe weather conditions.”

The gritting team pre-salts the roads to prevent ice or frost forming. The movement of traffic mixes the salt into any surface water to help prevent freezing.

In snow conditions salt will only melt a very thin layer of snow or ice. When this happens the team try to reclaim the roads as soon as possible.

At extremely low temperatures salt has very little effect and deep snow is cleared by ploughing.

During the winter months the city council operates a seven day, 24 hour winter weather service with staff from highways and Cityclean. The council has seven gritters, seven ploughs, six hand spreaders, one pavement gritter, three tractors and JCBs and 1,500 tonnes of salt for use during severe weather.

Keep warm and safe in the cold weather 

  • Look out for friends and family who may be vulnerable to the cold and ensure they have access to warm food and drinks and are managing to heat their homes adequately.
  • Try to maintain indoor temperatures to at least 18C, particularly if you are not mobile, have long term illness or are 65 or over.
  • Stay tuned for weather forecasts, ensure you are stocked with food and medications in advance, have deliveries or ask a friend to help.
  • Take weather into account when planning your activity over the following days.
  • If eligible seek entitlements and benefits such as Winter Fuel Payments and Cold Weather Payments, which are available to some.
  • If you meet the criteria register for priority service with your energy and water suppliers.
  • Avoid exposing yourself to cold or icy outdoor conditions if you are at a higher risk of cold related illness or falls
  • Discuss with friends and neighbours about clearing snow and ice from in front of your house and public walkways nearby.

Keep warm, keep well

Cold weather can affect your health. Find out how to keep yourself well and your home warm during a cold snap: 

If you are concerned about your health or that of a loved one or neighbour please call 111 for medical advice.

See more about our how we prepare for winter 

Stay up to date

Find out the latest about services and how you can help in the winter weather update