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Gritters are ready as temperatures plummet across Devon

Published: 25 November 2021

Gritters are ready as temperatures plummet across Devon Gritters are ready

Highways teams are prepared and ready to cope with the challenges of winter on the county’s roads as temperatures plummet across Devon.

The County Council is starting the season with its gritting depots fully stocked with the usual amount of around 24,000 tonnes of salt.

Six gritters have been replaced with newer models to continue the ongoing upgrade of the authority’s winter fleet of 37 frontline gritters. To ensure resilience of staffing numbers, three gritter drivers per route will be on standby as per usual.

A new Network Operations Control Centre in Sowton, Exeter, was launched last year to improve the monitoring of Devon’s roads 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

The centre enables parts of Devon’s highway network to be monitored remotely by using CCTV, weather information, traffic and congestion data. It is also able to control a range of Intelligent Transport Systems – such as variable message signs.

The systems at the control centre link to the county’s network of ice detector weather stations at strategic locations across the county.

Three new sites have been added ahead of this winter, increasing the network to 38 stations in total. Six of the existing stations have also been upgraded.

Last winter, around 18,000 tonnes of salt were used on Devon’s roads – treating more than 136,000 miles of the county. That’s above the average winter figure of around 13,000 tonnes of salt, and twice the amount used in each of the two previous winters.

More than 3,500 grit bins are located across Devon to support community self-help on roads which are not on the gritting network. These supplies must only be used on the public highway.

Devon’s volunteer snow warden scheme celebrated its 10th anniversary earlier this year, and there are currently around 325 volunteer snow wardens in towns and parishes throughout Devon.

Snow wardens provide additional support for their communities as part of the Council’s winter self-help scheme, treating their priority routes during spells of prolonged spells of severe weather.

More information and winter travel advice is available as updates on Twitter by following

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