Go to navigation
Gritting or salting icy roads
Medway Council has the responsibility of making sure
that all of the primary routes in Medway are salted
to help prevent ice from forming and to keep you moving on the
roads in severe winter weather.
Our preparations include:
- 5,000 tonnes of salt stockpiled
- Eight salting vehicles
- 388 salt bins
- 4x4 vehicles available to reach those in more rural areas.
To use the pdf files on this page you will need Adobe
Acrobat Reader. If you do not have it on your computer, please use
How does the council prepare for winter weather?
From mid-October to mid-April the council's contractor is on
standby to salt the primary routes in Medway whenever ice, frost or
snow are expected. Throughout this winter period a rota of council
staff act as Duty Officers. Their job is to look at the weather forecasts
and other data to decide whether salting action is required. They
are on call 24 hours a day so that they can react quickly to
changing weather conditions.
How do we determine when main roads need to be
The council obtains forecasts from the MeteoGroup UK, which are
specifically compiled for Kent’s roads. These are received daily
and show when road surfaces are likely to fall below freezing
during the following 24 hours. The aim is to salt the primary
routes before ice, frost or snow forms. This is planned well in
advance but sometimes it is necessary to react under emergency
conditions to deal with unpredictable weather.
Why might the roads still be icy?
Despite the high level of service provided, no guarantee can be
given that roads will always be completely clear of ice or snow
- It takes time for the salt to become effective after roads are
- Rain can wash salt off roads, leaving them prone to
- In severe cold weather (below -8°C) even salt will not prevent
roads from icing up.
- If a frost follows rain, salting will normally start after the
rain has stopped to avoid salt being washed away. Temperatures may
fall by as much as 5°C per hour, and the wet roads may well freeze
before it is possible to salt them.
Why do I need to be aware of dawn frost?
Dawn frost occurs on dry roads and involves the development
of early morning dew, which falls on cold road surfaces and freezes
on impact. It is impossible to forecast with any accuracy where and
when it will occur.
Drivers are reminded to check weather forecasts and road
conditions before and during their journey. If the weather becomes
severe, do not drive unless your journey is necessary.
If you must drive in severe winter weather, slow down and drive
according to the conditions. It can take ten times longer to stop
in icy conditions, so allow extra room to slow down and stop.
Add this page to my Quick Links: Add page
Send this page to a friend: Send