Lincolnshire County Council’s gritting and ploughing teams are vowing to continue battling against the conditions, but are warning of their limitations in “overwhelming” conditions.
The county’s full fleet of vehicles have been relentlessly salting and ploughing over 3,000km of priority routes and have added some secondary routes over the last few days and nights, carrying out back-to-back journeys across Lincolnshire. However, the authority is advising residents that salt can only do so much.
Paul Coathup, Assistant Director for Highways and Traffic, said:
“Tireless efforts have and continue to be made on our roads in attempts to keep traffic moving, and we thank everyone for their patience and understanding. We are making a difference out there, combined with help from colleagues at Fire & Rescue, District Councils, Lindum and other local contractors and farmers.
“However, despite this, it is simply impossible to keep fully on top of conditions and avoid considerable problems for motorists. On Tuesday night in particular, we were overwhelmed by conditions. Having treated the roads prior to rush-hour, heavy snow then fell on top of that salt, making it practically inefficient, with rush-hour traffic then compacting the snow onto the frozen road surface by the traffic trying to get through and out of the City. Accidents, abandoned vehicles and closed routes then brought the network to a standstill. Gritters and ploughs immediately went back out again but could only join this traffic congestion. Exhaustive efforts were made to get traffic moving again and the roads have been treated constantly since.”
The county council is receiving offers of assistance and if any other organisation is able to help with snow clearance, they are encouraged to contact their local divisional highways office or the helpline number 01522 782070.
“As well as issues with gritters reaching problem-areas, salt doesn’t work by itself – it requires the action of flowing traffic to mix it with the snow to form a brine. It also becomes ineffective as temperatures near -8.
“I would advise that anyone in the north of the county particularly does not travel or make any journeys unless absolutely necessary and listen to the radio to keep abreast of any road that are closed, as we are expecting further potentially significant snowfalls today. I would like to assure the public that we are doing all we possibly can, but expect to be met with challenging conditions once more.“
Please be aware if raising a query about gritting or any other highways issue they should be addressed to Lincolnshire County Council and not to East Lindsey District Council.