High winds and below-zero temperatures in Medway made gritters' work 'extremely difficult', says council
By MariaSoleil | Tuesday, March 12, 2013, 11:54
HIGH winds and below-zero temperatures made work 'extremely difficult' for gritters - causing roads across Medway to become impassable overnight.
Eight gritters were out across Medway last night according to the council
Motorists have been faced with tough driving conditions due to the extreme weather
Motorists have been faced with tough driving conditions due to the extreme weather, with many journeys taking hours instead of minutes.
Eight gritting lorries were deployed by Medway Council last night, but conditions meant the salt wouldn't take effect on the roads.
A spokesperson for Medway Council said: "The teams continuously retreated all of Medway's primary and secondary roads – which are more than 335 miles long - throughout the early hours and this morning.
"But high, blustery north easterly winds, below zero temperatures, which have frozen road surfaces, and continuous snow overnight and this morning have made it a difficult, with new snow continuously settling on top of grit and ice.
"Grit needs to be worked into the snow and ice by vehicles driving over it to take effect, so this has made the gritting teams work extremely difficult.
"However, main roads across Medway are now passable with care, but the council would advise residents to only make essential trips due to the conditions – as North Kent is one of the two worst hit places in the country."
Snow ploughs were also out treating the roads overnight on the B2000, Cooling Road, A228 Grain Road and Ratcliffe Highway.
These are used to move huge amounts of drifting snow that needs to be shifted due to its depth, but ploughs cannot be used to move low levels of snow on the road surface.
Gritting teams are currently out treating the third tier road network across Medway and contractors are out salting Medway's busy town centres by hand.