Are you ready for winter?

Gritters in Liverpool are ready to jump into action at the first hint of cold weather despite the country enjoying mild temperatures.

While everyone else has been making the most of the last glimpses of the Indian summer, Amey who provide winter maintenance services on behalf of the city council to keep roads safe during wintry weather, have been preparing for snow and ice.

Deliveries of salt have been on-going throughout summer and the city’s fleet of six gritters have all been preparing for their first run of the season since early September.

John Davies, Operational Highways Manager at Amey, said: “We have been preparing throughout the summer to help the communities in Liverpool cope when the snow and ice arrives.

“Every year our winter maintenance team work incredibly hard to help keep the city moving during periods of harsh winter weather and are ready to do the same again this year.”

Last year’s unprecedented mild, wet and stormy winter doesn’t mean it will be repeated, and the winter maintenance team are urging people to be prepared for more seasonal winter weather.

Is your vehicle ready for winter?

To coincide with the launch of our gritting service and to help highlight the importance of being prepared for winter driving, Amey has teamed up with ATS to ask motorists in Liverpool  to complete an online survey to find out how prepared they are as the winter fast approaches.

Responses from the survey will help the local winter maintenance teams identify and tackle common mistakes made by motorists, such as failing to carry the correct equipment and conduct appropriate vehicle checks before driving in dangerous icy conditions.

The survey is available online at www.surveymonkey.com/s/winterdriving2014.

Participants can choose to enter our prize draw to win a Red Letter Day driving experience or a £100 voucher for ATS.

Andy Barr, Divisional Manager for Highways and Transportation at Liverpool City Council, said “The winter maintenance teams are ready to do everything they can to keep Liverpool moving when winter weather arrives, and we are asking people to make sure they are prepared by taking on-board safety and travel advice and looking out for each other.” 

Kevin Clinton, head of road safety at the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), said: “Winter brings difficult driving conditions, so drivers need to prepare for this increased risk. Get your car checked to make sure it’s ready for winter driving, plan journeys to allow extra time, adapt you’re driving to the conditions and keep an emergency kit in your car. Also, listen to weather and traffic forecasts and be prepared to postpone your journey in very poor conditions.

“Every winter, highway authorities and their partners do a great job gritting and clearing snow. We very much welcome Amey’s winter preparedness survey, which will help to promote these key messages, and their work in keeping our roads in keeping our roads open, often in very challenging conditions.”

Bill Alexander, CEO at Red Letter Days for Business, comments: “Amey’s winter driving campaign is a great idea to encourage drivers to prepare for the winter ahead. We’re thrilled to be involved in such a great campaign and hope our memorable driving experience encourages as many motorists as possible to get involved.”

 

Winter driving tips

Before setting off:
• Ask yourself if the journey is really necessary
• Allow time to prepare the car; make sure all windows and mirrors are free from ice and snow and the heater has de-misted the inside
• Check the lights and wipers are in good working order
• Check the tyres are in good condition
• Carry ice scrapers and de-icer. It’s also worth carrying a mobile phone with a fully charged battery, a torch, first-aid kit, tow rope, blankets, warm coat and boots, jump leads, snow shovel, warning triangle, and an old sack or rug (to put under the wheels if you do get stuck)
• Consider using public transport – where and if possible

When driving:
• SLOW DOWN. Ice can still be present, even on a gritted route
• Remember stopping distances can be up to ten times further in icy conditions
• Always apply brakes gently. Release them and depress clutch if the car skids
• Manoeuvre carefully and gently
• Select second gear when pulling away, easing your foot off the clutch gently to avoid wheel-spin
• If you do get stuck, straighten the steering and clear the snow from the wheels. Put a sack or old rug in front of the driving wheels to give the tyres some grip. Once on the move again, try not to stop until you reach firmer ground
• If you find yourself behind a gritter, please keep a safe distance behind it and be patient. DO NOT try to overtake
• Listen to local radio stations to check road conditions
• If you need to abandon your car, try to position the vehicle in a location that allows gritters and other road users to pass