Gertrude and Rocky hit the road to keep winter roads gritted

November 29 2015

GRITTERS named by children in Yate and Coalpit Heath will be among an 11-strong fleet in action throughout the winter to treat South Gloucestershire’s roads in cold weather.


GRITTERS named by children in Yate and Coalpit Heath will be among an 11-strong fleet in action throughout the winter to treat South Gloucestershire’s roads in cold weather.

Gertrude, the choice of pupils at St Paul’s Catholic Primary School in Yate, and Rocky, named by youngsters at The Manor Primary School, Coalpit Heath, have already been out spreading salt on road surfaces.

About 30 per cent of roads in the district are gritted when ice has been predicted and this winter the treatment is being extended to cycle and shared-use paths from mid-December to make it safer for those who cycle to work.

South Gloucestershire Council has invested in new machinery that allows gritting teams to reach a number of the paths, although some will remain inaccessible. 

When required, staff treat main A and B-roads and routes to schools, care providers, fire, ambulance and police stations.

Gritter drivers are on call around the clock during the winter, with a network of roadside sensors used to monitor conditions throughout the district.

The council said about 14,000 miles of road were salted every year, with each gritting run covering up to 300 miles of the district’s roads. This year it had 5,000 tonnes of salt to see it through the cold weather.