In 2019 winter officially begins on 21 October for Essex Highways. We treat over 2000 miles of roads in Essex, which is about 40% of our road network. These are the most important routes to keep moving and all routes are treatable in a maximum of 3 hours. We operate 62 gritting lorries with ploughs plus two mini gritters with around 116 drivers who are deployed based on weather conditions.
For further guidance in case of severe weather conditions (school closures and other council services), see the main Essex County Councilpages.
Severe weather warnings for East of England are available from The Met Office
Winter decision making
Our decision makers get a report from our forecasters daily. This shows them minimum temperatures along with any hazards expected (frost, black ice, snow etc). From this they can make an informed decision whether to grit the County’s roads and the best time to do this. Roads are gritted before frost forms.
When they have made the decision, usually at lunchtime, they communicate this via our @essexhighways Twitter account using the hashtag #EssexGritters.