Gritting, salt bins and winter road services

Salt bins, road gritting, treatment routes and advice on clearing snow from roads and paths.

What does the council do to keep our roads clear in winter?

Please watch the video below to find out more:

Criteria for new salt bins:

When looking to place new salt bins, we review a number of factors including the:

  • severity of any bend
  • level of any additional risk, such as ditches, junctions, surface water, uneven surfaces
  • approximate traffic flows
  • approximate pedestrian volume
  • proximity to a school or public bus route
  • available space for the bin
  • location on an existing treatment route
  • proximity to nearby bins
  • slope of the road.

We will also consider any additional factors, such as the location of doctors surgeries, emergency services, hospitals, schools, designated elderly persons residences, churches.

Once placed the utilisation and treatment of the bin will be monitored. Bins will be removed in the following circumstances: 

  • Underutilisation - bins found not to be used over periods of adverse weather
  • When the placement of the bin becomes unduly contentious
  • General and persistent misuse of the salt bin
  • Two, or more, acts of vandalism to the salt bin.

How often are salt bins refilled?

We will fill salt bins twice during winter and again when we are told that they need refilling. However, the speed at which they can be refilled does depend on weather conditions, but we always make sure that priority roads are treated first.

How does the council decide which roads and footpaths to treat?

With, in excess of, 3500km of roads in the East Riding, our network is much larger than most, so we cannot guarantee we can keep every road open during bad weather. 

To make the best use of our resources, we focus our efforts in the following order:

  • major roads between cities and large towns
  • roads leading to smaller towns and villages
  • any remaining roads
  • footways and shopping areas.

Where can I use the salt from a salt bin?

You can use the salt in a salt bin to help with snow and ice on public roads and footpaths. You must not use it for private driveways, car parks or other non-public areas.

Salt for private roads and properties can be purchased from local builders merchants, who will normally deliver this to you.

How can I safely salt my road?

Follow this guidance to help you safely salt your road and footpath:
  • Consider your own health and safety at all times - wear appropriate clothing and footwear to keep warm and prevent falls. High visibility items also help you to be seen on the roads
  • If you have any health problems, consider asking for help from neighbours
  • Try to remove snow on a path (where possible) first before placing salt. This helps to stop residual water from freezing over
  • Do not obstruct paths or vehicle access with piles of snow
  • Salt can treat a wide area and does not need to be spread thickly. For example, an amount the size of a bag of sugar can treat a footway about 10 paces long
  • Use buckets or a wheelbarrow to transport salt over long distances
  • Avoid skin contact as road salt can cause skin irritation
  • Do not use water as it can change to ice and make the situation worse
  • Make sure you do not leave any of the tools, such as a shovel, you are using unattended or on the highway and clear them away after use.

You can find more advice on clearing snow on the Met Office website.

How have winter services been improved?

We have a number of strategic salt reserves stored in locations across the East Riding in case there is a national shortage and we are unable to buy salt.

Our new gritting vehicles:
  • direct the driver to roads that require gritting
  • adjust the salt spreading automatically
  • use pre-wetted salt that significantly improves the performance and reduces the amount we need to use on the roads.

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