Gritter came off road amid reports of black ice around Lerwick

The SIC’s gritters have been battling to keep the roads safe amid widespread frost across Shetland last night – with one of its fleet suffering a minor accident. 

Dave Coupe, executive manager for roads at the council, said the gritter came off at the Gulberwick loop road at around 7am – but was recovered and back to work within half an hour.

He said: “Last night was one of the coldest nights of the winter so far and council gritters encountered a widespread frost across Shetland this morning.  There are reports of some patches of black ice this morning, particularly around Lerwick. 

 The council’s road weather station at Toft recorded surface temperatures of -6C this morning. 

“Road salt is better activated better when passing vehicles drive over the salt, but is less effective below around minus four degrees,” Mr Coupe added. 

 “A spell of cold weather is expected this week, with temperatures at near freezing for the next few days and sleet showers expected. “

Council gritters will continue to pre-salt and treat roads according to conditions. 

“Drivers should be cautious in cold weather, particularly on untreated roads, and be aware that the temperature of the road surface can often be a few degrees colder than the air temperature.” 


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