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SALFORD STAR MARY BURNS AWARDS 2009
 

MARY BURNS AWARDS
DAY 16

THE TRUE GRIT IN SALFORD AWARD

Just before the final few MARY BURNS AWARDS are presented (and they're well worth waiting for!), we've been asked to make a special award for services to gritting Salford's roads this icy, snowy January, as everything shuts down for want of a bit of salt…

Ladies and Gentlemen. THE TRUE GRIT IN SALFORD AWARD…goes to…

Please do a drum roll and click here…


 

SALFORD CITY COUNCIL

Yes, nominations for Salford Council have come in from all over the city – from old ladies slipping in the grounds of their sheltered accommodation, to people not being able to get to work because their road hasn't been gritted once during the whole three week spell of icy weather.

`What do we pay our Council Tax for?'...`Why haven't they been stockpiling grit during the mild winters?'…`My road always used to be gritted but not any more – are they just saving money?' people have been asking us.

Barbara Spicer, Salford Council Chief Exec sent out a memo to councillors yesterday stating "We currently have enough grit left to continue cautiously gritting the primary routes. We are working with both our own services and those of partners (police, hospital etc) to prioritise gritting, use of the snow plough and also helping with the manual clearance of snow…we are aiming to get staff out again tomorrow to manually to  remove snow from vulnerable places such as outside the care homes."

And the Council website reports that "Non-primary routes will not be gritted".

We can't find any reports on the Council's website about its emergency winter plans for this year. But what we have found is a report from winter 2007 bellyaching about a £50,000 cost for gritting footways, as a result of  implementing The Railways and Transport Safety Act 2003, "in which Section 111 provides a duty on the Highway Authority to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that safe passage along the highway is not endangered by snow and ice".

The report continues that in the Act the words "reasonably practical" and "highways" are ambiguous and that "Additional liability may not even occur"…

It seems that the Council was more worried about legal claims against it as a result of the Act, than actually trying to make the highways and footpaths of Salford safe. 

A previous Council report from 2002 states that "The City Council is obliged to clear snow and ice from carriageways and footways" but adds that it's "not an absolute duty"…

So that's alright then?

Ladies and Gentlemen. Chuck your snowballs at the Civic Centre for the winner of the TRUE GRIT IN SALFORD AWARD…

SALFORD CITY COUNCIL

Applause…

If anyone from the Council would like to make a speech please fill in the Comments box below…although we don't expect anyone to be in work today at the Council, as they can't get there!

 

 

 

Paul Delve wrote
at 11:25:21 on 07 January 2010
Do the people of salford not realise that before anything can be done about the snow in Salford the councillors will have to go on a jaunt to some far off cold land to see how they do it first?..Obviously it will entail staying in very expensive Hotels and having very expensive restaurant meals!
 
Brian Francis Kirkham wrote
at 16:12:05 on 06 January 2010
If this was'nt a safety issue, I'd be laughing my socks off right now! As I type, Im observing a scene out of my bedroom-cum-office, that resembles something more akin to the ski resort of val d'isere than Greater Manchester. Although its not snowing at present - the compacted snow brought on by two showers of snow and compression by traffic makes it difficult to determine whats pavement and whats road. Im sure they've done the A-Roads (those ones leading to the hotspots of the Quays, Old Trafford, and Manchester), but when are they going to do the off shoot roads leading to schools and hospitals? The Salt's there - its just not been used in certain areas! As for the council not saying its their duty - isn't it responsible for the safety of pavements adjoining its highways and byways?
 
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