Council proves it's got true grit; HARD AT WORK Gritters cover 39,000 miles to keep us moving.
Byline: Lynn Jolly
Recent extreme winter conditions have seen Renfrewshire Council plough a record amount of resources into keeping roads and pavements safe.
In December and January, the council had specialist gritting vehicles on the roads 684 times.
These provided a 24-hour response to snow and ice and treated more than 800 km of road and 1,200 km of pavement across Renfrewshire.
Infrastructure, land and environment convener Councillor Cathy McEwan said: "This winter has been more extreme than most and I would like to thank our council workers and all those who provide frontline public services for their hard work during very challenging conditions.
"Between December and January, our gritting vehicles have covered 39,000 miles - 62,764 km - across Renfrewshire.
"Our gritting operators have racked up over 4,193 hours, often working overnight in order to make our roads and pavements safe.
"Like all councils, we need to allocate our resources to high priority routes, including main arterial routes and routes for emergency services."
There are 490 grit bins provided across areas of Renfrewshire that are not in the council's priority gritting routes, each holding half a tonne of grit.
Councillor McEwan added: "Over the winter period we have provided 1,000 tonnes of grit to grit bins and have used 3,700 tonnes to grit our roads and pavements.
"From January 15 to 21, we used 1,307 tonnes of grit.
"We ensure that there are sufficient supplies to carry out our operations as planned, restocking grit as required and using a backup contractor if needed."
With the weather set to improve, the council says it will now focus on improving roads across Renfrewshire. I am aware that we have been contacted by a number of drivers regarding potholes, which have been made worse due to severe weather and prolonged gritting, "The improving weather will now allow us to reprioritise road maintenance activities around repairing potholes.
"The safety of Renfrewshire's roads is a top priority and we aim to respond to safety defects as soon as possible after they are brought to our attention."
Anyone who has concerns about potholes can report them via an online form by visiting www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/roads and selecting 'report a road or lighting fault'.
Councillor McEwan added: "In the meantime, we will continue to examine innovative approaches to road resurfacing materials."
Extreme conditions Councillor Cathy McEwan says recent weather has been "challenging"