Stockpiling salt to tackle winter roads in West Lothian

West Lothian Council has stockpiled 30,000 tonnes of salt – three times the amount used in a “normal” winter.
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Councillors on the executive have agreed the £2.4 million winter plans.

And those on Community Payback Orders could find themselves clearing streets of snow to help council crews.

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David Wilson, roads operations manager, said: “It has been agreed that there is the potential for groups of community payback workers to assist with low risk activities identified by the service, such as snow clearance and hand gritting.”

Council is well prepared for whatever winter throws at us.Council is well prepared for whatever winter throws at us.
Council is well prepared for whatever winter throws at us.

The preparations were announced as weather experts revealed they expect a drier and colder winter, but with potentially more snow due to the effects of the Pacific weather system El Nino.

Mr Wilson added: “Delivery of the winter plan rests with roads and transportation; however, additional resources are utilised from NET’s, Land and Countryside Services to provide a robust and flexible rota.

“Trained HGV drivers from other services are also available should the need arise. A framework contract is also in place allowing the engagement of external resources and equipment if required.

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“Two dedicated crews will again be allocated to replenish grit bins on an ongoing basis throughout the winter period, similar to the last two years following the approval of a £1 million Winter Resilience Fund.”

The 25 strategic self help salt pick-up points, first introduced in 2021, will also continue.

Once again, residents will be able to keep a virtual eye on the council’s team of gritters via the gritter tracker on the council’s website. Gritting route maps are also available.