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19th Oct, 2021

Warwickshire's roads will be gritted this winter despite HGV driver shortages

Editorial Correspondent 13th Oct, 2021 Updated: 13th Oct, 2021

GRITTERS will be taking to the roads of Warwickshire this winter promise council chiefs.

Warwickshire County Council (WCC) says its gritting fleet is unaffected by the ongoing shortage of HGV Drivers and will operate as normal over the coming months.

Warwickshire’s highways spokesman Coun Wallace Redford said: “Our gritting fleet in Warwickshire always does a fantastic job keeping the network running smoothly across the winter months and this season will be no exception.

“Due to fantastic resilience planning within the service, its core business of clearing the county’s roads will be affected by the nationwide shortage of HGV drivers.

“The work of the service this season will be of continued importance keeping the roads clear of snow and ice for motorists and particularly Warwickshire’s key and essential workers.

“Last winter season saw the service welcoming five replacement gritters to the fleet, which were selected based on their low emissions so that WCC can keep its commitment to doing all that it can to reduce its carbon footprint and minimise its impact on climate change.”

Last winter season, Warwickshire’s gritting service carried out 78 gritting runs covereing 85,800 miles in total – equivalent to approximately 3.4 times around the circumference of our earth.

The gritters used some 16,600 tonnes of salt – which is equivalent to 592 lorry loads – and above the seasonal average of 12,000 tons which is reflective of a colder than average season.

The service has 95 members of staff, including drivers, depot supervisors and duty managers, supported by county’s Fleet Maintenance Service which keep the 38 gritting vehicles on the road – 29 front line vehicles and nine reserves.

WCC has five dedicated depots for the gritting fleet, one on each geographical area of the county and have six weather stations and even employs a dedicated winter roads weather forecaster to help decide when there will be a need to grit.

During the upcoming gritting season, WCC also plans to replace three more gritter lorries in the fleet with second hand vehicles, which will be selected based around the same criteria of lower emissions and reduced maintenance costs.

Visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/roads-transport for further information.

 

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