Wrexham Council plan for winter weather

Reporter:

Matt Sims

QUAD bikes could be fitted with snow ploughs and salt trailers and used to grit the town centre in winter months.

These proposals are included in a raft of new measures set to be introduced as part of Wrexham Council’s new winter service policy, including increasing salt storage capacity across the county from 4,000 to 7,000 tonnes.

In addition, two new weather ‘domains’ could be established – one in the town centre and the other in Bangor-on-Dee – to give more accurate forecasts in different parts of the county and thus allow specific roads to be gritted in different ways.

The move comes after one of the coldest winters in many years which brought chaos to Wrexham and the rest of the UK.

Other plans include establishing a new set of ‘priority two’ gritting routes, which could include sheltered accommodation, doctors’ surgeries and bus stops, and which would be dealt with on completion of gritting on the authority’s top priority areas.

And the proposals also include fitting snow ploughs to the council’s four quad bikes – normally used to spray weeds – to clear snow and grit footpaths in the town centre and village shopping areas.

Tractors could also be equipped with ploughs and gritting trailers to clear snow on higher ground after the authority’s gritters had problems reaching areas such as Brymbo and Bwlchgwyn during the last cold snap due to the icy conditions.

The increase in salt storage will be provided by an extension of the Llay depot and the opening of a new facility in Chirk, at the former Forestry Commission site.

Cllr David Bithell, the council’s lead member for environment and transport said:

“The proposed revisions to the winter service policy take on board comments received from our contact centre.

“The department have been working to provide for a new salt storage facility at Chirk for over two years, which will be an added benefit to be more responsive to the south of the county.”

Other proposed changes include reviewing the proposed locations of all existing salt bins and introducing formal criteria for siting each one, which could ultimately lead to some being removed or relocated.

Community councils could also be allowed to purchase their own salt bins, but would have to keep them filled via their own resources.

The new policy will be discussed by the council’s environment and regeneration scrutiny committee today.

See full story in the Leader

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