Motorists warned to watch out for icy surfaces

Lancashire County Council is warning people to be prepared for icy surfaces on Tuesday morning, February 2, due to a band of sleet and snow due to hit the county in the early hours.

Monday, 1st February 2021, 6:06 pm
A gritter in action

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning, highlighting that there is a particular risk of slippery surfaces to due to rain falling on already freezing roads and pavements as the front moves through. Snow showers are also forecast for a time across a wide area.

Gritting crews will be treating all priority routes this evening, and will then patrol and monitor throughout the night in case further treatments are needed as the wintry showers arrive.

Lancashire County Council has a fleet of 45 frontline gritters which can treat the 1,800 miles of the county council’s priority road network within around four hours, but may take longer in severe conditions.

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The priority network which is gritted whenever a freeze is forecast makes up around a third of all roads in the county. It includes non-trunk motorways and A and B roads which are the most essential for travel, along with single routes in and out of villages. The focus is on doing everything possible to keep traffic moving on priority roads, however it’s important that people drive to the conditions at all times as not all roads are treated, and even roads which have been gritted can remain icy.

County Councillor Keith Iddon said: “The nature of the front which has been forecast to arrive overnight means there’s a particular risk of icy surfaces tomorrow morning, and I’d ask people to take care if they need to travel.

“We’re always open about the fact that, while we have the resources to treat around 1,800 miles of Lancashire’s roads within four hours, we cannot grit every road, and even those that we have treated could be icy first thing.

“Rain falling on freezing surfaces can be a particular problem, as ice can form immediately, even on roads that have been gritted.

“It’s therefore essential that everyone use their judgement when deciding whether it’s safe to travel, and if you are driving, to drive according to the conditions, which could vary considerably over the course of your journey.”

Find out more about gritting in Lancashire, including which roads are gritted, and what you can do to prepare for winter at lancashire.gov.uk/winter. Follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/lancashirecc and Facebook at facebook.com/lancashirecc for news and updates.