Scotland

Scots councils bring in more salt and gritters to cope with snow

  • 14 January 2013
  • From the section Scotland
Lorry loading up with grit in Glasgow
Image caption Councils have extra salt supplies and more gritters to tackle the wintry conditions

Councils have more salt in stock or on order than ever before to cope with the risk of snow and widespread ice, Scotland's transport minister has said.

Keith Brown said more gritters and specialist equipment had been purchased to try to combat the conditions.

Forecasters said Scotland was expected to escape the most severe weather which was due to hit other parts of the UK.

But Mr Brown warned drivers to brace themselves for a "testing return to work" on Monday.

Weather warnings are in place for snow and icy conditions across many parts of Scotland over the next few days.

Wintry showers began in the north east of the country on Saturday and about 3cm of snow fell in the east and in the Borders on Sunday.

The average temperature of about 2C is expected to fall dramatically and the Met Office has issued yellow "be prepared" weather warnings for Grampian, Central, Tayside and Fife, the Lothians and Borders, Strathclyde and the Highlands.

Ice warnings have also been issued for much of the country, with rain and sleet mixing with the snowfall.

"Significant accumulations" of snow are expected on Monday, even at lower levels, with the potential for some travel disruption.

Image caption On Sunday snow fell on the M74 at Beattock in Dumfries and Galloway

Mr Brown said: "We can expect colder days, overnight frosts, a risk of widespread ice, some freezing fog and snow.

"Local authorities and operating companies have more salt in stock or on order than ever before, additional gritters and specialist equipment has been purchased, and new weather stations and cameras are helping to improve decision making and deliver better informed communications.

"A conference call with the Met Office, operating companies and Transport Scotland officials took place on Friday to ensure suitable planning and preparations are in place.

"The Multi-Agency Response Team stands ready to be fully operational should conditions escalate, and ministers are receiving regular updates."

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