Severe weather: Council gritters working round the clock to keep principal routes open
City of Edinburgh Council staff have been working around the clock to help keep the city moving during the ongoing severe weather.
Gritters have been working 24-hours-a-day all weekend in response to the heavy snowfalls.Due to the intensity of the snowfalls, we have concentrated all our resources on keeping Category 1 roads (ie essential main roads, such as roads to hospitals and principal bus routes) open as our top prioirty, in accordance with the Council's Emergency Plan. However, this has proved difficult in the ongoing severe weather.
All staff have been mobilised and staff have been redeployed from street cleansing and roads maintenance duties to assist with gritting over the weekend, targeting priority areas such as shopping centres.
Councillor Robert Aldridge, Environment Leader, said: "The past 24 hours or so have seen something in the region of between six and ten inches of snow fall in Edinburgh. This is an abnormally high volume of snow for this sort of time period and our staff have been working continuously since Friday night to keep the city's main routes passable.
"Residents should check Radio Forth for updates and take extra care if they need to head out. We're also asking people to look out for their vulnerable neighbours and use grit in the bins provided by the Council to help us keep pavements clear."
Euan Kennedy, Head of Roads, said: "We have mobilised all our gritters and mini-tractors and they have been working around the clock since Friday night to keep the city's Category 1 roads and pavements clear as far as possible in the continued snow showers.
"Our gritting operations are based on the weather forecasts we get from the Met Office. Further snow showers are forecast from late this afternoon and into the early hours of tomorrow morning, therefore the priority continues to be Category 1 routes, which are currently passable with care. Category 2 and 3 roads (including residential) will be targeted as soon as the weather situation improves."
The severe weather also forced the cancellation of the St Andrew's Day events and Nativity Carol Concert, all due to be held in St Andrew Square today.
For more information about the Council's Severe Winter Weather planning, please see our earlier news release.