6:58pm Wednesday 7th November 2012
By Adam Care
Following a series of accidents on icy roads this week Wiltshire Council is confident it has enough grit to see it through a harsh winter.
On Tuesday morning four cars were involved in three separate accidents on the B3107 between Bradford and Holt after flooding and low temperatures combined to produce black ice.
A car drove into a hedge at 6am, a further two cars collided soon after, and a fourth car skidded on the same stretch at 8.15am. Wiltshire Police closed the road while debris was cleared and the council was called to lay grit on the dangerous areas.
A motorcyclist was also injured on Hilperton Drive at 9.10am on Tuesday and sustained arm and chest injuries after skidding on the ice. The man in his early 20s was not seriously injured, but was taken to Bath Royal United Hospital with reported neck pain.
The council’s grit lorries went out on Monday night to target these at-risk areas, but were called back on Tuesday to apply more grit by hand after a night of heavy rainfall.
Despite the gritters seeing early action Wiltshire Council’s Cabinet Representative for Highways and Transport Councillor Dick Tonge remains confident the county will cope.
He said: “We have meteorological stations across the county, as well as information from the Met Office we use for predictions.
“We have to grit at the right time, because if we do it too early it gets washed away, and too late people start to have accidents.
“We are already up on our supplies from last year, and have enough in store for a severe winter.
“I’m very, very confident we will have enough salt. The main supply comes from Middlewich, in Cheshire, and after a mild winter last year they have still got huge stocks there.”
Wiltshire Police had advised motorists to take extra care when driving on country lanes in icy conditions, and to avoid known danger spots wherever possible.
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