Birmingham 'never better prepared' for winter

Birmingham City Council is confident it can tackle the worst winter can bring after a big investment in its gritter fleet and new GPS technology.

For this year’s winter maintenance service, the city has bought a new fleet of 25 gritters, all fitted with GPS technology which is on standby 24 hours a day.

This means controllers will be able to electronically record when, where and how much grit is being put on the roads.

Contractor Amey is responsible for maintaining Birmingham’s highways, working in partnership with the council on gritting routes covering 745 miles, almost half of the city’s roads.

The council said the gritting routes had been “further refined” this winter so that the gritters could cover the network in much less time than previous years.

It believes it will now take three to four hours to grit the whole of the priority network in the city.

All its new gritters are fitted with technology that records exactly how much salt has been in use, aiding the monitoring of salt levels throughout the winter.

The council said it is fully stocked with 8,700 tonnes of salt ready to grit the city’s roads.

Councillor Timothy Huxtable, cabinet member for transport, environment and regeneration, said: “With even more advanced vehicles and intelligence about how to use our more than adequate salt supplies, we will once again be doing all we can to support residents and businesses over the winter months.”

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