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DRAFT WINTER MAINTENANCE POLICY, SEDLESCOMBE PARISH

INTRODUCTION

The purpose of this Policy document is to state briefly the current situation in Sedlescombe regarding gritting, salting etc. of Sedlescombe's roads and pavements.

 

WHICH ROADS WILL BE GRITTED?

The busiest primary roads are gritted first. These include the major A and B roads, and about 75% of C roads. Twenty-five gritters are used covering more than 840 miles across East Sussex.

 

During snow and very severe icy conditions, an additional 130 miles of secondary roads are gritted.

 

Despite this work, there is no guarantee that treated roads will always be completely clear. It takes time for the salt to become effective and, in very cold weather, even salt won't prevent roads from icing. Also, there can be isolated spots on the road where running water from rising springs can wash the salt away before it becomes effective leaving icy patches. This may be a particular problem in Sedlescombe as it was during the 2009/10 severe winter weather.

 

If a road is not on a primary or secondary gritting route, it will not be gritted. Minor rural and urban roads are left to thaw naturally.

 

In extreme and prolonged cold weather conditions, East Sussex County Council, has to be mindful of how much salt is in stock. This may mean that sometimes the gritting arrangements have to be changed.

 

WILL PAVEMENTS BE GRITTED?

Pavements are not routinely gritted.

 

HOW MUCH DOES THE GRITTING COST?

Every time the fleet of gritters go out to salt the primary road network, taking about 3 hours, it costs around £8,000.

 

WHAT CAN WE DO TO HELP OURSELVES?

People can clear pavements of snow and ice outside their own homes or businesses. According to East Sussex County Council, "there is no law preventing you from doing this and it's very unlikely you would face any legal liability, as long as you are careful and use common sense".

 

A check can check be made on vulnerable people, such as the elderly, who live nearby who may not be able to clear snow and ice themselves.

 

The elderly should take extra care moving about when conditions underfoot could be slippery. Sensible footwear that give a good grip should be worn. Using a walking stick usually provides extra stability. Remember that Sedlescombe Lift Scheme drivers might be able to help with transportation to the Surgery if an appointment needs to be kept during bad weather.

 

Householders can get in a small stock of grit to use as necessary. A shovel full of grit will be sufficient for 20-30sq. metres of road or path.

 

CAN WE GET EXTRA GRIT BINS?

East Sussex County Council will provide new grit bins but not unless

  1. Someone else meets the cost.
  2. There is a suitable location.

All requests for bins must be channelled through the Parish Council or the District Council.

 

Sedlescombe Parish Council has considered whether it should meet the cost of providing new grit bins in the parish and has decided not to do so. The Parish Council will, therefore, only put requests for new grit bins through to East Sussex County Council if the money (£275 in the first instance to include grit) is forwarded with the request and a suitable location has been identified. The cost of refilling the bin will be £70 on each occasion.

 

This information (apart from advice to the elderly above) has been taken from advice published by East Sussex County Council. More details can be found on East Sussex County Council's website by clicking here.

 

P J Raymond

Clerk/Financial Officer

Sedlescombe Parish Council

November 2010