From ice to wind and back – all in a week’s work for Highways teams

It’s been a busy week for Somerset County Council’s Highways teams with a variety of challenges caused by the weather.

On Tuesday night, the team was in winter response mode, working through the night to grit around 900 miles of highway across the county as temperatures plummeted and snow fell on higher ground.

Then the wind and heavy rain arrived, and officers reacted to 36 call outs between 4pm on Wednesday and 8am on Thursday. This included 21 reports of fallen trees and 8 reports of flooding.

Although no major roads were closed, there were a small number of closures affecting minor roads until they could be cleared in daylight hours.

The same workforce was then back on gritting duties for Thursday night as the cold weather looked set to return.

Cllr Harvey Siggs, Somerset County Council’s Cabinet Member for Highways, said: “The weather this week has been extremely challenging with ice and snow followed quickly by wind and rain.

“Each day has brought its own challenges, but our dedicated highways staff have been out and about at all hours of the day and night to help keep Somerset’s roads clear.

“Not many people realise that it’s the same workforce called into action whatever the weather, and I’d like to publicly thank them all for their hard work.

“Let’s hope next week is a bit more settled so they can all have a welcome break – doing their regular day jobs looking after our county’s roads”

If you spot a problem on the road, you can report it online at www.somerset.gov.uk or telephone 0845 345 9155. For regular updates on the roads, please follow @SomersetGritter on Twitter.