Winter weather – January 2021

Gritting teams clock up 61 runs so far this winter!

And that’s not all – the teams from Via East Midlands who look after the highways on behalf of the County Council have also spent a total of 240 hours out on the roads, which is equivalent to driving non-stop for 10 days and nights!

There have been 12 times since the start of the gritting season on 1 November 2020 that our teams have had to make more than one run in the same day/evening, and this often involves gritting not only main routes, which are A and B roads and major bus routes, but also what we call severe weather routes as well. Why not check out our gritting route maps to see where you are likely to spot a gritter this winter?

Each time our teams go out on main routes, they cover around 1,120 miles which is a similar distance to driving from Lands’ End to John O’Groats…and back!

It’s been a busy winter so far for our gritting teams, who spent 15 days/evenings in a row out on Nottinghamshire’s roads between 27 December 2020 and 10 January 2021. 

Recent weeks have seen snow fall across the county, bringing some hazardous driving conditions as captured by our traffic cameras above, so we want to ask you, do YOU know how to drive in snow and icy conditions?

Lets bust some gritting myths!

Does gritting melt snow? Does putting salt on the roads mean that snow won’t settle?

The answer to both is no, which may surprise you!

When the weather turns colder and the snow starts to fall, we always get a lot of questions on our social media channels about how gritting works, so here’s the answers to some of the biggest myths.

Firstly, the salt we spread doesn’t necessarily prevent snow from settling. When it’s spread, the salt mixes with moisture to form a saline solution, which has a lower freezing point than water, and it is this which helps to prevent ice from forming. 

When it comes to snow, sometimes it can fall at a rate quicker than the salt can mix with the snow, and this is why snow can settle, no matter we do in advance.

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