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I thank the minister for his answer, which was really helpful.
How will the Scottish Government facilitate the collaboration between the roads authorities and Transport Scotland, should there be a need to share resources and emergency equipment? The minister may or may not be aware that, last year, South Lanarkshire Council offered its assistance in treating trunk roads. That offer was rejected.
Scotland’s roads can be very dangerous during the winter, and drivers have to ensure that they are aware of the hazards and of any travel difficulties that may develop at short notice. I welcome the Scottish Government’s initiative to promote safe winter driving and winter tyres. However, in harsh conditions, it might be safest for drivers not to venture out of the house at all. I hope that the Scottish Government will do all that it can to communicate to the public the importance of travel warnings from the police. When the police tell drivers not to travel unless their journeys are essential, they really mean it.
Employers must manage winter absences with care—and definitely with sympathy. They must communicate with authorities about any closing down of workplaces—as we would all expect headteachers to do when deciding whether or not schools should remain open.
Although we cannot predict the elements, we should always do our best to prepare for them. The Scottish Government must ensure that Scotland is ready, that we are all prepared, and that the people we serve can keep safe on the roads.