Gritters keeping Blackpool's roads safe

Gritters keeping the roads ice free
Gritters keeping the roads ice free
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Blackpool’s gritters have been out in force this week to keep the roads clear of ice as temperatures plunged.

Although the resort has escaped heavy falls of snow, during the past week the team has been out five times using 60 tonnes of grit.

Dry and windy conditions have lessened the risk of ice, but primary routes including Devonshire Road, parts of the Promenade and Red Bank Road were among those to be gritted within four hours of weather worsening.

Secondary routes such as Squires Gate Lane and Preston New Road are treated when weather gets more hazardous.

A council spokesperson said: “So far this year we have been out 25 times using 400 tonnes of grit.

“We have teams on standby from November to March.

“During the past week we have been out five times using 60 tonnes of grit, and we have 500 tonnes in stock.

“The cost of a gritting treatment varies depending how much is used but it could cost up to £4,500 a day if we are experiencing snow.

“This week street sweeping activities have been suspended as they would only be clearing the rock salt away.

“The teams have been refilling the grit bins for the public to use and treating the shopping streets etc.”

The severe weather emergency protocol in Blackpool is activated when the temperature is predicted to fall below freezing for three consecutive days.

This triggers emergency provision for homeless people at Street Angel based at the rear of St John’s Church in Cedar Square.

Access time is 10pm, and the facility remains in place until 7am the following morning, but dogs are not permitted.

Other restrictions, such as local connections are lifted.

Gritters have been out in Blackpool five times already this week

During bad weather in 2009/10, gritters went out 39 times and spread 1,345 tonnes of grit.

The highest number of gritting treatments was in 2012/13 when the team went out 49 times using 719 tonnes.

Fewest treatments and least grit used was in 2013/14 when gritters went out just nine times using 105 tonnes.