THE prolonged icy conditions on our roads are set to stay for some time yet and Wrexham Council workers say they are continuing to work extremely hard to ensure the county borough’s roads are kept as clear as possible.

The current cold snap has lasted almost continually since December 9 during which about 40 per cent of the council road network amounting to almost 500 kilometres of roads have been kept clear of ice and snow. 

The work has been carried out using the council’s gritting fleet with more than 50 members of staff involved in the operation.

During this period over 3,000 tonnes of rocksalt has been put onto our roads.

Salt supplies are being monitored throughout the UK and the supply of salt to local authorities is being co-ordinated at a national level. Wrexham’s salt supplies are “adequate”.

Wrexham has a Winter Maintenance Policy which priorities roads for treatment. 

Priority 1 roads are routes carrying substantial volumes of traffic having characteristics which require protection from frost throughout the night.

These routes include both Class A and B roads.

Priority 2 roads are non-principal roads that form main distributor routes in urban areas, access routes to smaller rural communities and schools, industrial estate roads and remaining bus routes. Height above sea level and gradients are factors in distinguishing these roads from priority 3 roads.Priority 3 roads are all the remaining and treatment will normally be restricted to snow clearance or salting in times of snow or persistent heavy frost. Snow clearance may be carried out by either Wrexham County Borough Council or by contractors retained on term contracts.

In snow conditions Priority 1 roads will be cleared first followed by Priority 2 and 3.

Chief environment officer John Bradbury said: “Our winter maintenance policy clearly sets out what roads are a priority for gritting and when to grit non priority routes. 

“I am pleased to say that to date we have applied this policy and our main roads have received several thousand tonnes of salt. 

“Side roads too are gritted under the policy during prolonged periods of snow and ice and this has been taking place as resources become available.”

Cllr David Bithell, lead member for the environment and transport, said: “Staff have been working incredibly hard to ensure as many roads as possible are salted. 

“Salt, however, only has a life span of eight hours and the gritters have to return to those priority areas to keep the roads clear of ice. 

“We understand some residents are concerned about their particular areas and we would like to reassure them that we will continue to salt in accordance with the resources available to us.”

During the cold spell residents are advised to heed all weather warnings and prepare adequately for any journey they have to make.