A fleet of gritting machines will return to the Island’s main routes this winter, but a number of key roads will be left out of the programme. The Isle of Wight Council has published a gritting route map to help people identify the areas which will be treated in freezing conditions as part of its winter maintenance service.
Around 35 per cent of the Island’s total road network will be treated in necessary this winter, but as part of the Council’s 2019-20 budget savings, and following a full risk assessment, a number of roads have been removed, including the Military Road, Thorley and Wellow Main Roads, East Ashey Lane and Yaverland Road.
However, the route between Northwood and Shalfleet via Porchfield, including Whitehouse Road to Vittlefields Cross, will be treated in the expectation of higher than normal traffic volumes using this route during the St Mary’s junction improvement works.
Cabinet member for infrastructure and transport, Councillor Ian Ward, said: “The Council’s focus has to be on the Island’s primary routes, those carrying the highest volumes including key commuter routes, as it is not practical or economical to salt every road.
“Despite the need to make savings to set a balanced budget, we have ensured our arterial routes are covered to keep the Island moving in times of snow and ice. We will continue to monitor the situation and, should the need arise, carry out bespoke gritting where necessary. We will also continue to treat pavements in town centre locations in snowy conditions.”
Island Roads, which deliver the winter service on behalf of the Council, typically run the service from November until the end of March, but they began its close monitoring of the network conditions at the start of October to ensure that any abnormally cold spell could be responded to if required.
They have also taken delivery of around 1,600 tonnes of salt, a comparable amount to previous years, in readiness for the winter season.
You can find details of which roads will be gritted at islandroads.com/27-winter-service-.html