Gritting and Winter Maintenance
In the winter months, West Lothian Council has to treat over 1,000 km of roads and around 1,300 km of footways to combat the effects of bad weather. Further information, including advice on winter driving can be found below.
About our Winter Service
Our Winter Service normally operates from the last Thursday in October till the last Thursday in March. It is important to appreciate that it is not possible to treat all routes simultaneously.
In this view, the council must adopt a priority system to ensure that the treatment is targeted to areas of greatest need first.
The Council's Winter Service Policy
The Council`s Winter Service Policy has classified specific roads and footpaths within West Lothian as either a Primary or Secondary gritting route, not all roads and footpaths are gritted.
Secondary routes are further broken down into Levels 1, 2 and 3
We cannot treat every road or footpath, we just don't have the resources, so we must prioritise those that have been agreed with elected members.
Gritting Route and Winter Maintenance Enquiries
Should you have any enquiries relating to Gritting Routes or Winter Maintenance. Please use our online form.
Treatment of Routes
Where possible, we aim to treat, with grit, major roads and important bus routes prior to the formation of ice. We operate this service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week when necessary. Once these primary routes have been treated, we treat secondary routes such as those in housing estates and rural areas. (Information in relation to the M8 and M9 motorway is detailed below).
We also deal with footways on a priority basis. In ice and snow conditions footways leading to schools, hospitals, health centres, shopping areas and where there is heavy pedestrian movement are treated first. Main routes to residential areas follow, with internal footways in housing areas being treated as resources permit.
In addition we provide over 2,000 grit bins, which are positioned throughout West Lothian for use by members of the public.
You can request a grit bin to be refilled, request a replacement grit bin where it is missing, damaged or broken, or request a grit bin where one isn't present, using our online form.
The provision of grit bins in urban areas is to offer the public a self-help option to overcome localised difficulties of greatest risk in relation to the effect of winter conditions on roads and footpaths. It is important that the council encourages and helps facilitate self-help by those members of the public who are prepared to carry out this work.
However, the number of grit bins made available needs to be controlled. Maintaining adequate salt levels in the bins results in an operational burden therefore careful consideration is given to the provision and location of grit bins.
Consideration is also given to the following:
- New grit bins are only provided in accordance with the and grit bin criteria
- If the location is currently on a primary carriageway or footway route then a grit bin will not be considered as the risk should be mitigated from planned treatment
- Grit bins will only be located where they can be accessed and filled from a lorry
- Grit bins will be replenished at the start of the winter period and then only as an when resources allow thereafter.
- Council grit bins will be left in place all year, we do not refill private grit bins
- Both the grit bin and grit are purely for use on a public road or footway
- The locations of grit bins will be recorded and made available online, to find your nearest grit bin use our map search
- The council will not provide grit bins in private areas or car parks for use by any other council or any other public or private property such as schools, parks, hospitals, care homes, etc. unless a service level agreement is in place
- Only those requests submitted online with the proposed location shown on a map will be considered
- Applicants will be notified when the application is successful or not, the responsible officers decision is final
- A request will not be accepted unless a location to site the bin has been agreed with the responsible officer
- Grit bins that are stolen/damaged or missing will be first reassessed in line with the criteria, a previous grit bin will not be replaced if the location does not meet the criteria
- In times of an extreme weather event it is not always possible to service and replenish grit bins due to their location and the deployment of resources in higher priority areas
- Ready Winter Information
- Traffic Scotland - Live Traffic Cameras
- (Information on Gritting, Snow clearing, Winter driving tips and Contact numbers)
Service Standards - We will:
- Publish our winter maintenance policy, including treatment priorities and level of service, each year prior to the start of winter maintenance operations (details of our winter maintenance policy are provided in a guidance note);
- Carry out gritting and snow clearing operations on public roads and footpaths in accordance with published policy;
- Provide new grit bins in streets which meet the required criteria; and
- Fill grit bins on receipt of a request as resources allow, or following periods of severe weather.
Contact Details - For policy on route priorities, requests for new grit bin or refills, general information/comments on service provision - 01506 280000 (24 hour contact number)
M8 and M9 Motorway maintenance
Customers who wish to report new road defects, gritting issues, potholes, litter etc. on the M8 and M9 trunk roads should contact BEAR Scotland.
Their 24hr contact number is 0800 028 1414.