WITH temperatures starting to drop, Isle of Anglesey County Council is getting its gritters and road salt ready for winter.
The fleet of six gritting lorries are vital to maintain winter resilience of roads across the island.
The council’s Highways Service is prepared for the winter months ahead and currently has more than 4,000 tonnes of salt in stock, enough to fill two Olympic size swimming pools.
It takes about 30 tonnes of salt to treat the 260 miles of Anglesey’s gritting routes; the equivalent to travelling from Amlwch to Cardiff Bay via Birmingham.
Gritting lorries are deployed when road temperatures hit one degree Celsius or below.
Last year, Anglesey roads were gritted on 88 days, with the gritters travelling almost 23,000 miles.
Head of Service Highways Waste and Property, Huw Percy, said: “Ensuring the safety of road users during the winter months is a top priority.
“Our gritting fleet is vital in maintaining the winter resilience of our road network and keep Anglesey road users as safe as possible during severe and challenging weather conditions.
“Based on last year’s weather conditions we have enough salt in stock to grit for almost 130 days if needed.
“We will be monitoring our three weather stations closely from now on to monitor weather conditions and forecasts.”
Highways portfolio holder, Councillor Bob Parry, added: “The gritting team do a great job and when the winter weather arrives our team will be ready to keep our main roads clear and safe.
“We have five routes covered by six gritters. We want everyone to travel safely on our roads and ask that drivers take extra care near gritters, leave a safe distance, overtake gritters carefully when it is safe to do so and only at a reduced speed.
“Motorists should also be careful in cold or bad weather and follow the appropriate guidance.”
Anglesey’s gritters have their own unique names, which promote the area’s culture and the Welsh language and reflect the routes they travel.
Should one of its vehicles suffer a breakdown, a sixth gritting lorry, Mona, can be deployed to ensure that the gritting service remains unaffected.
More information regarding the gritting routes on the Council website at: www.anglesey.gov.uk/en/Residents/Parking-roads-and-travel/Roads-and-pavements/Winter-maintenance/Winter-gritting.aspx.
Guidance for driving in icy or snowy weather is also available at: www.highwaycodeuk.co.uk/icy-and-snowy-weather.html.