Household Grit Bins – What Advantages ?

Owning your own Grit Bin and having a personal ready supply of Rock Salt can be a great advantage in severe winter weather when public Grit Bins can be empty due to high demand or if the Council are struggling to replenish stocks of Rock Salt in Grit Bins placed on side streets due to roads being locked with snow and ice. This was the case in many towns throughout the UK during the severe winter of 2010/11.

Throughout this winter there was a severe shortage of Rock Salt, with stocks throughout the country severely running low and councils having to cut back spreading on minor routes and many public Grit Bins were left empty.

Continue reading… “Household Grit Bins – What Advantages ?”

Cold countries – How they deal with snow and ice

Dealing with severe winter weather conditions in the UK is a challenge for the country as a whole but how do other countries deal with winters that stretch over two hundred days throughout the year and snow drifts can be as deep as 10 or 15 feet deep, here are a few snippets from various countries around the world explaining how they counteract the conditions: Continue reading… “Cold countries – How they deal with snow and ice”

How to keep warm this Winter – Department of Health UK

To keep warm and well during periods of cold weather:

  • Keep curtains drawn and doors closed to block out draughts.
  • Have regular hot drinks and at least one hot meal a day if possible. Eating regularly helps keep energy levels up during winter.
  • Wear several light layers of warm clothes (rather than one chunky layer).
  • Keep as active as possible.
  • Wrap up warm if you need to go outside on cold days.

Continue reading… “How to keep warm this Winter – Department of Health UK”

Snow Warden Scheme – Volunteers helping out

The UK Snow Warden Scheme is a community volunteer programme whereby local councils train a number of volunteers in residential areas to help clear snow and ice from side roads and pavements. The idea originated in Canada with a group of volunteers known as the Snow Angels.

Volunteers are trained in Health and Safety and are issued with the equipment to enable them to carry out the job effectivly. The equipment consists of a shovel, flourescent jacket and gloves, grit salt and in some instances a grit bin if required.

Snow Wardens are a great help to the council and  local community they live in, during bad weather many quieter roads don’t get gritted, with Snow Wardens helping clear these roads with the help of friends and neighbours, this enables the council to focus on priority routes.

Snow Wardens also provide information to their local council regarding the effect the weather has had in their area’s.

Most councils throughout the UK are now running this scheme and anyone wishing to join simply needs to call their local council to make a request to become a volunteer.

Preparing Your Car For Winter

It is important with the onset of Winter that you prepare your car for the cold weather. Here are our tips to ensure your vehicle is ready for the ensuing snow and ice:

  • Ensure you have your car regularly serviced. An ideal time would be in Autumn, just befor the onset of Winter.
  • Check your brake system is in good working order, this is paramount in Winter.
  • Ensure your tyres have adequate tread, if you need to replace them, do so, even if the tread is above the legal required limit allowed. This will provide you with the performance you need to tackle the harsh weather. The better the tread, the better the grip on snow and ice. We would also recommend fitting Winter specific tyres, as they provide superior performance in cold weather conditions.
  • Check the battery and ensure it is in good working order.
  • Check all lights and ensure they are working correctly, especially the hazard warning lights.
  • Check windscreen wipers and replace if need be.
  • Check the screen wash is not blocked and working correctly, add anti-freeze to the screen wash bottle.
  • Ensure all ventilation and heating systems are in working order to minimise misting on the windows.
  • Rock salt spread on roads during winter can be corrosive and can damage the cars paintwork. Ensure you wash and clean off the rock salt on the more vunerable parts of your car on a regualer basis.

Whenever driving in Winter weather, you must be prepared for the unexpected. To ensure both the safety of yourself and other road users, it is advisable to carry out a quick visual check on your vehicle before every journey throughout the season.

Driving in Winter – Emergency Kit

It is advisable in the Winter months to carry an emergency road kit to ensure you are fully prepared if the worse should happen and you find your vehicle stuck or stranded in the snow. With the last two UK Winters being the most severe in many years, it is vital as we head into the Winter months that you take your personal safety into consideration whilst driving. The number of breakdowns during the Winter months can double. The Kit should be stored in the boot of your car and should consist of the following:

  • Ice Scraper
  • Snow Shovel
  • Torch
  • First Aid Kit
  • Booster Cables
  • Blanket
  • Gloves
  • Extra Clothing and Footwear
  • Map
  • Grit Salt

It is also important to note that in the severest of Winter weather that no journey is as important as your safety and if you can avoid travelling, then please do so.