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Snovid-19 and Gritter Thunberg the Lanarkshire gritters battling cold snap

With the recent cold snap, South Lanarkshire’s pun-tastic gritters have been out in force spreading some seasonal cheer.

And you can now follow the likes of Snovid-19, Gritter Thunberg and Lewis Caploughdi’s in real time on the council’s dedicated gritter tracking map.

Over the past couple of years the local authority have invited local schoolchildren to name their gritters, and with the new map you can follow Salt Disnae, Oh Plougher of Scotland and Spready Mercury as they move around the area.

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Chairman of South Lanarkshire Council’s (SLC) community and enterprise resources committee, Councillor John Anderson, said: “The gritter tracking map lets everyone see exactly where the gritters are at any given point in the day.

“Of course it’s important to point out that many of them are out making the roads safe for everyone while we are tucked up in our beds – so you may need to get up early if you want to see them in action!

“The map also shows the path they have taken in the last 12 hours.

“Although a fun and interactive way to see what is going on, it also sends an important message that our drivers are out there no matter how severe the weather.

“They deserve an immense amount of credit for their hard work, professionalism and dedication.”

When snow or ice is forecast, SLC grit 52 per cent of the road network including all A-class roads and important access roads (e.g. hospitals, fire stations, isolated communities and schools). Typically, councils grit 48 per cent of their networks.

Every year the council use thousands of tonnes of salt and this year expect our salt supplies to be around 35,000 tonnes as we enter the main winter season – five times the stock they held eight years ago.

National salt shortages of the relatively recent past have shown that all councils have to be well prepared.

More than 150 winter road workers are on call with access to a fleet of 39 gritters, one snowblower, 17 footpath tractors and five loaders to help them salt the roads, clear snow and keep roads and footpaths in as safe a condition as possible.

The local authority also rely on the assistance of many colleagues in Land Services and mobilise farmers and contractors to assist when necessary.

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