Pedestrian Areas and Roads: Snow and Ice

Department for Transport written question – answered on 21st December 2022.

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Photo of Lord Mawson Lord Mawson Crossbench

To ask His Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the level of gritting of (1) roads, and (2) pavements, during icy weather.

Photo of Baroness Vere of Norbiton Baroness Vere of Norbiton Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

Section 41(1A) of the Highways Act 1980 places a duty on local authorities to ensure, so far as reasonably practicable, that safe passage along a highway (which covers both the carriageway and footway) is not endangered by snow or ice. It is the local authority’s responsibility to assess the need to grit and ensure that there are adequate drivers available to carry out gritting operations.

The Government recognises that it is not possible nor proportionate to grit every road or pavement in the country. Instead, local highway authorities prioritise parts of the network that contain essential services such as bus routes, hospitals, and shopping centres. Councils provide winter information including details of their gritting routes on their websites.

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