Wales politics

Minister orders review on Welsh councils' snow handling

Snow in Wrexham during the last snowfall on 7 January
Image caption Snow in Wrexham during the last snowfall on 7 January

Assembly government officials have been asked to review how every authority in Wales responded to the recent heavy snow.

Local Government Minister Carl Sargeant said he believes lessons can be learned from the adverse conditions.

Some councils were criticised for their response to freezing temperatures, with many roads and pavements left slippery and impassable.

Mr Sargeant said salt supplies would continue to be monitored.

He said the weather had led to "extensive disruption" on some occasions and put added pressures on public services in Wales, but he paid tribute to those who helped keep main roads and hospitals running.

He said: "I think it is safe to say that some local authorities responded better than others at keeping routes open for both traffic and pedestrians.

"Officials will conduct a review of the response of each local authority so that lessons can be learnt.

"Pressures on public services due to the weather will continue to be monitored over the coming months.

"We may not have seen the last of the severe weather this winter so we must remain prepared."

The minister added that there were currently sufficient salt stocks in Wales and that further supplies were scheduled.

In December, the assembly government provided an extra £7m for local authorities to spend on salt and mending potholes.

Mr Sargeant said he had asked that priority be given to routes used by the elderly or vulnerable, such as doctors' surgeries, shopping centres or schools.

More on this story