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Winter gritters rolled out across Kent as temperatures start to plummet

PUBLISHED: 12:02 14 October 2016 | UPDATED: 12:22 14 October 2016

Gritters outside County Hall

Gritters outside County Hall

Archant

KCC will grit more than 2,500 miles of Kent’s roads while the trucks are in operation until March

Winter appears to have officially begun in Kent as the county council today (Friday) rolled out its gritters as temperatures start to fall.

KCC’s 64 gritter trucks, which will remain in operation until March, have warmed their engines by taking part in a dry run of the 53 gritting routes.

They are now on standby for when the temperatures plummet further and staff are keeping a beady eye on 13 weather stations which determine when gritting needs to take place.

Last year’s relatively warm winter still saw the gritters cover about 70,000 miles across Kent, which is about 80 trips from Land’s End to John o’ Groats.

KCC grits more than 2,500 miles of Kent’s roads and has 53 primary salting routes covering 1,300 miles of road.

There are more than 2,000 salt bins in parishes across the county and KCC is backed up by around 117 farmers to help plough 208 rural routes during bad snow.

Matthew Balfour, KCC’s cabinet member for environment and transport, said: “It might be a little chillier in the morning at the moment but freezing conditions can strike early and we’re fully prepared for this.

“A winter service runs between now and March and we’re stocked up with 20,000 tonnes of salt, held in a network of depots across the county.

“Whilst we’re confident we’re prepared, I’d urge everyone to make sure they’re ready for the winter months by checking over their cars, particularly brakes, topping up anti-freeze and ensuring their tyres are in the best condition for maximum safety.

“As ever, check the weather before travelling and make use of our salt bins to improve grip on roads and pavements.”

A competition for children is also being launched inviting them to come up with a name for two of KCCs mini gritters, designed to grit narrow roads on primary routes across the county.

Entries can be made at www.facebook.com/KentCountyCouncil

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