Positive feedback for gritting team after a busy weekend
AS HUNDREDS of people enjoyed a weekend of sledging and snowball fights, authorities across Swindon are reflecting on a busy period.
Gritters were working around the clock from Thursday evening making sure the main roads around Swindon were kept clear of snow. Swindon Commercial Services had their drivers working 12-hour shifts, covering 48 per cent of Swindon’s roads and using 400 tonnes of salt.
The majority of Swindon’s main roads were clear of snow by Saturday morning but traffic issues, including broken down lorries, meant some roads, such as Victoria Road, were impossible to drive up.
Pauline Lancaster, highways manager at SCS, said: “It has been a very busy weekend for us and we had drivers working 12-hour shifts to keep the roads clear.
“The traffic flow in the Friday morning rush hour made it difficult for us to get some of our lorries to certain places. And without the flow of traffic, the salt was not helping to stop the snow.
“The feedback we have had has been quite positive. There are always people who say ‘my road wasn’t clear’ but we only do 48 per cent of the roads, and we have to cover the main ones.”
The police had an increased number of calls over the weekend, mainly linked to traffic incidents because of the snow, plus some about people throwing snowballs.
Temporary Chief Supt Paul Mills said: “We saw an increase in the number of minor road traffic collisions over the weekend, as drivers struggled to control their vehicles in the conditions.
“We have a number of 4 x 4 vehicles that are strategically positioned throughout the county to enable officers to deploy safely to incidents.”
Age UK has responded to the severe weather by urging the public to keep an eye on older neighbours or relatives over the next few days, to make sure they stay safe and warm as the weather gets colder.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for the Great Western Hospital thanked staff for their efforts after the snowfall on Friday.
She said: “During times of heavy snowfall we are likely to see an increase in weather-related slips and falls into the Emergency Department.
“Over the weekend, extra trauma doctors were provided to ensure we were able to treat additional patients.
“People were generally following weather advice warnings and not venturing out if necessary, and we only saw a small increase in numbers.
“While we are not expecting further heavy snow this week, with freezing temperatures continuing the ice is now a concern, and we encourage everyone to take extra care when getting around.”
And the Adver has been getting through thanks to the efforts of our newspaper delivery team.
Senior newspaper sales executive Angela Blackford said: “With the snow and freezing conditions gripping Swindon over the past few days, we would like to take this opportunity to say a big well done to all of our delivery agents.
“Without exception they made every effort to ensure our home delivered customers received their paper on time.
“Their commitment and dedication to their roles as a delivery agents is very much appreciated. We salute them.”