Preparations are in place should freezing temperatures hit the borough over the coming months.

More than 500 tonnes of salt have been delivered to Swindon Borough Council’s Waterside depot in Cheney Manor Industrial Estate, taking the road salt stockpile to over 800 tonnes.

The salt which has been put aside by the Council is enough to treat the town’s priority routes 20 times. Additional salt is on provisional order should Swindon experience snow or prolonged cold spells with further salt stocks easily available should they be needed.

Last year, during the ‘Beast from the East’ and other cold snaps, the Council treated the priority routes 54 times using approximately 1,800 tonnes of salt.

A team of eight drivers and eight gritting lorries will be on stand-by 24 hours a day to grit the priority routes, which cover 208 miles of the borough’s 520-mile road network. They will also be on hand to plough the routes in the event of heavy snowfall.

The Council’s drivers have been out training over the past three weeks going over their routes and making sure they are as prepared as possible in the event of severe weather.

The Council has emergency planning procedures in place and staff in many service areas will also be placed on standby in the event of severe weather.

Councillor Maureen Penny, Swindon Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways and the Environment, said: “We start preparing for winter well in advance as we need to make sure we have the correct contingencies in place. We always make sure we have enough road salt in stock and thanks to good planning from the team we never get close to running out.

“Our excellent gritting teams showed how valuable they were last year and they all worked extremely hard to keep our priority roads clear in what were often very difficult conditions.

“Our winter preparations extend beyond the highway. We have plans in place to ensure we have staff ready to respond around the clock to keep our vulnerable residents safe in adverse weather.”

Further information on Council services in an emergency or during adverse weather will be available on the Council social media accounts and through the Your Swindon newsletter available at swindon.gov.uk/newsletter

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