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Gritting ready to respond

Parking, roads and transport

19 October 2021

A group of men in high visibility jackets stood in front of a gritting lorry

A 20-strong gritting team is now officially on standby for when the cold weather hits and all three depots in Brixworth, Towcester and Wellingborough are fully stocked with tonnes of salt ready to spread.

The team, which is fully resourced and will provide the service for North Northamptonshire Council and West Northamptonshire Council, is now prepared for the new season.

Like last year, Northamptonshire Highways has made sure that drivers providing this essential service are as Covid-safe as possible.

The fleet of gritters has enhanced technology meaning the need for two people in a vehicle is not required unless there is heavy snow. The technology provides route data and feeds back to the snow desk to ensure gritters are on route and safe.

In addition, the usual group winter inductions have also been taking place in small groups.

We’re making sure that we are ready to respond when the cold weather arrives. 

We have been able to maintain the same gritting network of about 43% of our roads on the precautionary network to ensure all our villages are accessible, but, we would always advise that drivers should never assume that a road has been gritted and should drive with caution when there has been a frost. Even when a road has received a gritting treatment, the salt requires activation from the movement of vehicles - because a road has been gritted it does not mean that all risk of accident has been eliminated. Please drive safely!
Cllr Graham Lawman, North Northamptonshire Council’s executive member for Highways, Travel and Assets
This week marks the beginning of our winter season, and we have ensured our salt stocks are high and that we have all 20 gritting vehicles and a full complement of drivers ready to go. 

Our aim is to make Northamptonshire's roads as safe as possible, to ensure people can travel with a minimum of delay and disruption, whatever the weather throws at us this winter.

Weather stations and sensors along Northamptonshire's roads will be used to return temperature readings every 15 minutes and weather forecasts every hour. A team monitors the sensors 24 hours a day.
Cllr Phil Larratt, Portfolio Holder for Climate, Transport, Highways and Waste at West Northamptonshire Council

Individual roads from the precautionary network will be gritted when forecasts predict the weather will drop below 0.5C for that area. 

Additionally, 1,500 grit bins have been filled for use on public roads and footpaths. If you see a grit bin empty, please report it on StreetDoctor.