In the UK we don't get long periods of snow falls, hence our council don't devote alot of resources to this area, we had an icy period early in the year when the council got a bit of stick for the grit bins being empty, locals cottoned on that it's upto them to remind the council where the bins are empty and during this recent spell there have been no online reports of empty bins.
When the snow hit us last week the national media gave the councils a grilling for not being able to cope, there was a good phone-in on FiveLive (strangely the next day they were on the councils side reporting how everything possible is being done). Locally there were a few complains on the lack of gritting, which got me thinking what are the councils commitments.
Westmorland Gazette Report 1
Westmorland Gazette Report 2
Well a quick search concludes that they don't commit to much, look on South Lakeland District Councils website and they are very quick to pass you over the Cumbria County Councils website.
So what do CCC commit to, not a lot, put simply:-
- Priority 1 class roads - Aim to salt within 3 hrs (Kendal - Sedbergh Rd, Burton Rd, Milnthorpe Rd, A roads through Kendal)
- Priority 2 class roads - Aim to salt within 5hrs (Kendal - Shap Rd, Appleby Rd, Windermere Rd, BeastBanks, Natland Rd, Oxenholme Rd, last on list Urban roads in Kendal)
- only when forecast is for long periods of icy weather, limits to footpaths with high levels of use, usually main shopping areas. Aim to start gritting within 5hrs, for Kendal priority is given to Stricklandgate (Sandes Avenue to Highgate); Highgate; Kirklands; Allhallows Lane
Conclusion is with a long period of snow like we've had then unless your near a priority road then there is a slim chance that your road will get cleared if snow continues to affect higher priority roads. We've not bothered with our car for a week, currently under 15cms of snow, doing what others have done and ventured out on foot, some using sledges at shopping trolleys.
CCC Winter Guide