Surrey

Surrey orders an extra 3,800 tonnes of road salt

An AA recovery van helps a vehicle near Box Hill
Image caption Motorists were urged to only make essential journeys during the wintry weather in December

Nearly 4,000 extra tonnes of road salt has been ordered by Surrey Council as part of its preparations for a severe winter.

The authority said it was investing nearly £750,000 it had saved by striking better deals to help tackle expected ice and snow.

It has ordered 16,800 tonnes of salt, up from 13,000 tonnes in 2010.

Councillor Ian Lake, transport spokesman, said about 110 more miles (177km) of road would now be gritted.

In the early part of December 2010, motorists were urged to only make essential journeys after heavy snowfall and freezing temperatures made conditions treacherous.

'Plenty of grit'

The council said as part of its winter preparations it had agreed to use two quad bikes to treat rural roads and routes in built-up areas that grit lorries could not reach.

It also said it would double the amount of grit given to borough and district councils to spread in town centres to 40 tonnes.

Mr Lake added: "Sun screen and ice cream may be on most people's minds at the moment but we're thinking about snow and ice already as we prepare in advance for any severe weather that winter throws at us.

"Our plans include gritting around 110 more miles of road regularly and trialling special quad bikes to get to areas that large gritters can't reach, particularly in rural parts of Surrey.

"We're also making sure there's plenty of grit available for all Surrey's other councils to use in town centres and a bigger army of farmers is ready to clear snow-covered roads."

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