Advice and assistance
Non-motorised road users
All road/footpath users should consider the conditions before they travel and be aware that we treat areas of greatest need (primary routes) first and try and use these if possible. Footpaths do not normally receive pre-treatment. During periods of snow and ice, we ensure we clear enough space so that users of wheelchairs, pushchairs and prams can use the pavements. At times, we grit only one side of the pavement to enable us to move quickly on to other areas.
Be aware of the local forecast and road conditions by listening to the radio, watching the TV or using the internet. Take precautions to grit/clear your own paths/driveways where appropriate and clear snow from your car before using it. If your drive is usually affected by snow and ice, get some salt supplies in advance of your journey. We have over 900 grit bins and therefore there will likely be one near you.
With any heavy snowfall, or very icy conditions, it's impossible for the Council to treat everywhere, and where the severe weather is prolonged, we have to maintain priority routes. We encourage people to take responsibility for their own area and do what they can to help, especially for vulnerable neighbours.
We are not able to supply salt/grit to people visiting the Council depots. You can buy salt/grit from most DIY stores, when the weather is really bad it is best to check by telephone that they have stocks available. If you can’t get hold of salt/grit try some sharp sand to aid with grip on icy paths and driveways.
The advice from the UK Government states that:
"There's no law stopping you from clearing snow and ice on the pavement outside your home or from public spaces. It's unlikely you'll be sued or held legally responsible for any injuries on the path if you have cleared it carefully."
Priority has to be based on greatest use to keep main thoroughfares open, for example access to hospitals and schools. We will do our best to prioritise locations where we know there are older people with a serious illness or disability; however, we would also encourage people to look out for their neighbours in extreme weather. Footpaths are not normally pre-gritted, however, if there is persistent severe weather, requests of this nature will be prioritised and included in the gritting schedule, managed by the duty officer on call.
If we receive a request for assistance from a member of the public or from our colleagues in the emergency services we will assist as soon as we can.