Winter Weather Information

We are fielding a lot of enquiries due to the winter weather so please find below some additional information.

Road clearance – Highways clear the main route through Northleach only. They do not do the side streets and most of these are usually cleared by the local snow plough operator as directed by Highways. Here is the link to the Glos Highways gritting routes map: www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/winter.

Gritting – Highways will grit the main route only when the weather conditions indicate icy conditions. Highways are responsible for the road network and during adverse winter weather Gloucestershire Highways’ resources are focused on keeping the strategic carriageway network running, with priority being given to bus routes, schools, and routes with emergency services such as hospitals, doctors, fire and ambulance. In addition the snow warden has spread grit (when available) on the priority areas. In addition residents are able to help themselves to grit from the bins across town. However grit has run low over the last week.

Locally – The Town Council try to assist by ordering salt stocks, checking on the grit bins and trying to refill them when empty if there is stock available. This week due to the severe conditions the grit stock ran out and we were not able to replenish till yesterday as Highways were also out of bagged stock. Please find a copy of our grit bin locations (please note there have been some new bins including ones at the bottom of Nostle, in the Churchyard as you come up from the Post Office and Meadow Lane). Please let us know if you have ideas for other bin locations and we will investigate. They have all been filled but most have run empty again. The snow warden is refilling them today but again salt stocks are low and they may not all be filled. Please continue to let us know if your local one is empty.

Gritting on pavements and footpaths – Highways will grit  some of the footpaths if they have the resource. Please help yourself to grit if you want to use it on public land like roads and pavements. Please do NOT use it on your private drives as you can be prosecuted for that.

Can I clear pavements? This is a really common question, and the simple answer is that you can. This government website has further advice:  www.gov.uk/clear-snow-road-path-cycleway.

Please check on neighbours who may not wish to venture out in the snow or icy conditions.

Cotswold District Council also offers winter advice on their website: www.cotswold.gov.uk/residents/get-ready-for-winter/.

Kind regards,
Cat Crompton, Town Clerk

Gloucestershire County weather update

Gritters will be going out around the county tonight as more snow is expected to fall.
Teams will be going out later this evening treating primary routes – all A and B roads – ahead of the predicted snowfall from around 2am.

Coming from the north, forecasters say the snow will fall during the early hours and again during tomorrow morning accumulating to between 2cm and around 9cms particularly on higher ground.
However, the snow will turn to sleet and then rain by mid-morning turning most of the snow to slush.

Temperatures are expected to fall to just below freezing but will rise over the weekend and into next week.
Tomorrow morning, drivers will need to take care on the roads.
Tips on winter driving can be found online at www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/winter.

While the council will do all it can to keep roads free of ice, residents are also being urged to do their bit too by helping to clear pavements.

Last year people were worried about liability issues after clearing ice and snow themselves.
But new guidance from the government on gritting your own driveways and pavements is now available on www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/winter and people are being advised to ensure they’re prepared before bad weather hits.

Latest Bulletin from Gloucestershire Highways.

Current Weather Conditions:
All areas: A few snow showers at various points of the county, overcast with temperatures currently just below freezing.

Current/Recent Treatments:

East:  Ploughing on key routes continued until 21:00/22:00 (20/12/10), and recommenced from 04:00 this morning. Gritting being carried out on Cirencester Key Routes this morning. (Route C7 Only – due to breakdown when other routes were completed)

West: Key route grit of 15g just being completed in west. Additional ploughing will commence on key routes. Farm ploughs assisting in rural areas.

Central: Key route grit of 15g carried out at 23:00 on 20/12/10. Scouts across the area were out in the early hours and additional salting and ploughing currently being carried out at hazardous locations on the key routes.

Proposed actions during the day/night:

All areas: Treatment decision for the next 24 hour period will be made following receipt of the forecast due at lunchtime.

All areas: Treatment decision for the next 24 hour period will be made following receipt of the forecast due at lunchtime.

Network Risks:   

  • East: All treated routes passable with care. Untreated network very icy, extreme caution required
  • West: All treated routes passable with care. Untreated network very icy, extreme caution required.
  • Central:  All treated routes passable with care. Untreated network very icy, extreme caution required.

www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/winter

Freezing Temperatures Cause Icy Roads

Motorists are being urged to take extreme care as freezing temperatures cause widespread ice on roads across the county.

Gloucestershire County Council has been out over the weekend and overnight gritting roads to try to prevent ice from forming. Gritting teams were out throughout the day yesterday, treating the roads and ploughing to remove snow, with up to 12 inches falling in parts of the county.

To ensure roads were treated again before temperatures dropped overnight, a second team was brought in during early evening and a complete grit run of all A and B roads in the central area took place at 7pm last night. But when temperatures plummet below -7, grit become less effective. Below -10, grit has no effect at all. Last night, the county saw averages temperatures of around -10 with some areas dropping to as low as -17. This has led to widespread ice forming on the roads with particular problems in urban areas of Cheltenham and Gloucester.

The council already has fleets out around the county, but with temperatures likely to fall to below -7 again, ice is likely to remain on the roads. Cllr Stan Waddington, cabinet member for environment, said: “I completely understand people’s frustrations, but when we’re seeing temperatures as low as -17 no amount of gritting will make any difference. “Unfortunately, grit does not work when it’s this cold and there is simply nothing we can do about that. We will continue to do all we can to keep the roads moving, but I am afraid that there are no easy solutions here. I would advise people to make essential journeys only and to take extreme care if they have to go out in the car and check the forecast before leaving.”

Motorists are advised to stay off the roads if possible, but if you do have to drive, do so with extreme caution.

Tips on winter driving can be found online at www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/winter.

Inspector Keith Fagan, Gloucestershire Police, said: “Due to the current adverse weather conditions we are continuing to advise drivers not to make their journey unless it is absolutely necessary. If you must travel then the first thing I would always recommend is that you allow plenty of time to complete your journey.”

  • Trying to reach a destination within a tight time-scale, especially in poor weather conditions, increases stress and the potential for an incident.
  • Drivers are also urged to prepare their vehicle and make sure it is in good condition before setting out.
  • Make sure that you clear all the snow, ice and misting from your windscreen and other windows before starting to drive. 
  • Keep your speed steady and slow and remember that braking distances can more than double on wet or icy road surfaces.

While the council will do all it can to keep roads free of ice, residents are being urged to do their bit too by helping to clear pavements.

Last year people were worried about liability issues after clearing ice and snow themselves. But new guidance from the government on gritting your own driveways and pavements is now available on www.gloucestershire.gov.uk/winter and people are being advised to ensure they’re prepared before bad weather hits.

Gloucestershire Highways Adverse Weather Bulletin – Sunday 19th Dec

Current Weather Conditions:

All areas: Dry, cloudy with occasional bright spells. Temperatures remaining well below zero.

24hour forecast: This afternoon will be cloudy and dry. It will remain dry overnight with some clear spells for a time. Patchy freezing fog will form as the night progresses. Monday morning will see the freezing fog lifting, but it will remain cloudy. There is a chance that snow may arrive towards midday. RST’s will be mostly well below zero through the forecast period with widespread ice and hoar frost.

2 to 5 day forecast: RST’s will remain mostly well below zero through the outlook period with widespread ice and hoar frost. Monday afternoon will be cloudy with some outbreaks of snow, although there is uncertainty regarding how heavy the snow will be. Tuesday will be cloudy with some further snow likely and this could turn heavy in the late morning/early afternoon with a risk of moderate accumulations. The snow should die away in the evening. Some patchy freezing fog may form later. Wednesday will start mainly dry with patchy freezing fog slowly lifting. There is a small risk that an area of moderate to heavy snow could extend northwards from the near continent for a time in the afternoon and overnight. Thursday will be largely dry and bright and it will remain dry overnight with clear spells for the most part, although freezing fog may form.

Current/Recent Treatments:

  • East:  Key route grit of 15g carried out at 19:00 on 18/12/10. Key route action called this morning due to snow on network from yesterday, a further 15g on network plus ploughing, this action is currently ongoing.
  • West: Key route grit of 15g carried out at 19:00 on 18/12/10. Scouting of northern area carried out this morning, no ploughing required.
  • Central: Key route grit of 15g carried out at 19:00 on 18/12/10. Scouting of northern area carried out this morning, Ploughing commenced on A435 at Bishops Cleeve and B4077 near Toddington at 11:00, this action is ongoing.

Proposed actions during the day/night:

  • East: Additional grit to be placed on strategic parts of key route network to improve friction and grip.
  • West & Central: Key route grit of 10g (15g where required) at 19:00

Network Risks:   

  • East: A429 at Fossbridge closed due to RTC involving a petrol tanker, Police closures of other main routes remain in place, treatment continuing. Reports of vehicles ignoring police closures. Police advise public to stay at home unless journey is essential.
  • West: All treated routes passable. Untreated network very icy, extreme caution required.
  • Central:  All treated routes passable. Untreated network very icy, extreme caution required.

Gloucestershire Highways – Adverse Weather Bulletin

Date:    18/12/2010
Time:    14:30
Issued By:    John Kay

24hour forecast: This afternoon will be dull with some intermittent snow. It will remain mainly cloudy overnight, although the snow will largely die out. A few clear spells may develop later. Tomorrow morning will be mainly dry and bright. RST’s will be mostly well below zero with widespread ice.

2 to 5 day forecast: It will remain cold throughout; RST will remain mostly below zero, with widespread ice and hoar frost. Sunday night will be dry, clear spells before patches of fog will form. Monday will become cloudy, with snow arriving in the south. It will stay cloudy overnight with moderate to heavy snow for much of the time. Tuesday will be cloudy with the snow easing through the morning. More snow may arrive from the south by the end of the day. Wednesday will see any snow die out to leave a largely dry day with sunny intervals, although there is low confidence on the timings and intensity of the snow.

Current/Recent Treatments:

  • East:  Key route patrolled since 04:00 and ploughed/salted as required. Ploughing continuing, but due to heavy snowfall A class routes being prioritised.
  • West: Key route patrolled between 04:00 and 13:00, ploughed/salted as required
  • Central: Key route patrolled since 04:00 and ploughed/salted as required. Ploughing continuing in the northern section of the central area. All clear in the south.

Proposed actions during the day/night:
All Areas: Key route grit of 15g at 19:00.

Network Risks:   

  • East: A429 at Fossbridge closed due to RTC involving a petrol tanker, likely to be closed for 3 days. A40 Charlton Kings closed. A436 Seven Springs to Andoversford. Heavy snow means only essential journeys should be considered. Extreme caution required.
  • West: All routes passable.
  • Central:  All routes passable.