21 January 2013

Northamptonshire County Council is working with district and borough councils to clear Priority 1 footways of snow and ice as air temperatures tonight are set to plunge to as low as minus 7C.

In addition today, winter maintenance crews treated the Priority 1 highway routes at midnight, again from 3:30am and then again from 1pm.

The Snow Desk – a 24-hour-staffed control hub - continues to operate and patrols are monitoring the road network to report any problems. Roadside grit bins continue to be replenished as required.

The current weather forecast is for conditions to be mainly dry this evening and for a time overnight with some clear spells, although mist, freezing fog and low cloud is expected to develop through the night.

There are indications that a few snow showers could move in from the west towards the end of the night and may possibly linger for a time into tomorrow morning. Road surface temperatures are anticipated to well below zero, as low as minus 8.5C, with ice and hoar frost.

Drivers are being reminded to take care whilst driving in snowy and icy conditions and allow more time for their journey.

Advice on driving in snowy conditions includes:

  • Drive at a slow speed in as high a gear as possible; accelerate and brake very gently.
  • Drive particularly slowly on bends where loss of control is more likely. Brake progressively on the straight before you reach a bend. Having slowed down, steer smoothly round the bend, avoiding sudden actions.
  • Check your grip on the road surface when there is snow or ice by choosing a safe place to brake gently. If the steering feels unresponsive this may indicate ice and your vehicle losing its grip on the road. When travelling on ice, tyres make virtually no noise.
  • Drive with care, even if the roads have been treated.
  • Keep well back from the road user in front as stopping distances can be ten times greater than on dry roads.

Pedestrians are also encouraged to wear appropriate footwear to minimise the risk of slips and falls.