From November to March the council provides 24/7 highway temperature monitoring and a highway gritting delivery service for the 181.58 miles of the borough’s roads.
We receive regular Met Office weather forecasts which help us identify when we need to grit. Gritting is usually complete within three hours of operations starting.
Roads that are gritted
Six primary routes, covering almost half of the roads in Knowsley, are gritted. These include:
- M62 motorway (Liverpool boundary to Tarbock Interchange)
- All strategic routes
- Major bus routes
- Transport Interchanges and bus stations
- Interconnecting roads within important industrial areas
- Roads leading to ambulance, fire stations and hospitals
- Roads on significant hills/inclines and known trouble spots
Gritting routes are available as:
National guidelines and advice from other agencies such as the police help to identify which roads are the most important for the safe movement of traffic and should be gritted.
Schools often clear key pathways, access roads and frontages. In very severe conditions, we will grit outside school gates if enough salt is available.
Major retail parks and supermarkets normally grit car parks and outside their shops.
The product used to treat the roads is Safecote-treated 6mm Thawrox+. This has the following benefits:
- It works longer than normal rock salt
- It works at temperatures as low as -10oC (dry rock salt will not work below - 6 oC)
- Less of the product is needed to treat roads as it is more effective. This means there is less waste and that gritting vehicles do not need to return to the depot to be reloaded
- The Safecote reduces corrosion of the gritting vehicles.
- Safecote improves the distribution of salt on the highway by 35 - 40% when compared to rock salt
- Safecote enables roads to be gritted earlier in the evening than if rock salt was used.
Dealing with icy and snowy conditions
You can help deal with icy and snowy conditions by:
- Having your own stock of salt
- Clearing your drive and pavements in front of your property, while taking care and making sensible precautions. The Met Office has some advice about clearing snow from drives.
- Helping vulnerable or elderly neighbours.
- Driving only when absolutely necessary and taking extreme care. Public transport is resilient, and buses normally travel along main routes which are regularly gritted.
- Keeping up-to-date with weather conditions by watching and listening to local TV and radio stations
Repairing damage caused by bad weather
Damage to roads is caused by water and thawing snow seeping into small cracks in the road. As temperatures dip, the water freezes and expands, enlarging the cracks. This causes cracks and potholes to appear.
Inspection and repair works return the highway to a safe condition as quickly as possible. Reporting a pothole will help us indentify and repair damage more quickly.