Winter maintenance plan approved for Skye and Raasay

Gritting priorities for Highland Council roads and footpaths in the Skye and Raasay area this winter 2018/19 have been approved by Councillors today (Monday 3 September 2018).

Skye and Raasay Committee members have given the green light to a plan which includes road lists and maps prioritising gritting routes. It explains that primary routes are treated first, followed by secondary routes and then all ‘other’ routes as resources permit.

The plan includes an alteration to weekend services as set within the Council’s current Winter Maintenance Policy which was recently approved at the 16 August, Environment, Development and Infrastructure Committee with a small number of ‘difficult other’ routes to be agreed at Ward level.

The Council’s policy is in place to ensure a consistent level of service is applied across all areas of the Highlands.  Each year local areas put in place their Winter Maintenance Plan to cover the operational details in order to deliver a service locally within existing budget and resources.

Members have agreed that a standard weekend service will be introduced to with the same service level being provided on both Saturdays and Sundays.

Councillors discussed the priorities of gritting the Skye and Raasay area network of 170km (27%) primary routes, 102km (16%) secondary routes and 346km (57%) other routes across all the area’s Wards.

Across the Skye and Raasay area there are 6 gritters available and 2 footpath tractors and a team of 19 staff are involved in delivering winter maintenance. The average annual usage of salt is approximately 4,000 tonnes and there is sufficient salt in stock or on order spread across depots to meet this requirement.

Cllr John Finlayson standing in as Chair in the absence of Cllr John Gordon said: “We have agreed the Maintenance Plan for Skye and Raasay for this winter 2018/19 with the additional provision that further conversations will take place between members and the Council’s Roads’ Engineer about the identification of additional routes that may be deemed priority routes. If there are any alterations to the gritting priority routes these will be up updated on the route map which will be published on the Council’s website.

“Members of the public are reminded that they can apply for self-help assistance through community councils for salt/grit bins, scrapers and reflective waistcoats where they feel this is most needed in their communities.
“We are also reassured that the Council has a framework contract in place to call out local contractors in exceptional weather conditions.”

Details of the Skye and Raasay priority routes and winter services information will be published on the council’s website at: http://www.highland.gov.uk/gritting.

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5 Sep 2018
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