PRESS RELEASE RE WINTER SERVICES
Following criticism received during last winter’s extreme weather conditions, particularly in the run up to Christmas, representatives from Burnham and Highbridge Town Council have met with officers from both Sedgemoor District Council and Somerset County Council in an effort to provide some assistance to local residents and businesses with the limited resources available.
Somerset County Council’s Highways division are generally able to pre-treat 21% of major routes overnight if ice is forecast by the Met Office. For Burnham and Highbridge this includes the following routes:- A38, Highbridge and Burnham Road, Oxford Street (as far as the Esso Garage), Queen’s Drive, Marine Drive (to the Fire Station) and also a spur into Broadhurst Gardens (to the Police Station). This means that the major routes in and out of the towns, and access to all the emergency services, will be maintained.
In addition, should snow and ice be on the ground for more than 24 hours, the following routes will also be treated by Somerset County Council (subject always to the availability of manpower and salt supplies):-. Marine Drive (from the fire station), Esplanade from the RNLI and BARB to Sea View Road, Berrow Road to Brean Down, Frank Foley Parkway and Brent Road.
Earlier this year the Town Council provided joint funding with Sedgemoor District Council to purchase a portable gritter so that the following additional routes can be gritted as a priority once snow/ice have formed: Stoddens Road, Burnham-on-Sea High Street, Pier Street, Market Street and the access to Highbridge Station. Once these have been treated, priorities will be agreed via the Town Council offices in Jaycroft Road (tel 01278 788088 or email email@example.com) working closely with the Sedgemoor depot in Oxford Street in Burnham on Sea.
In addition, Sedgemoor District Council’s staff from the depot in Oxford Street will be diverted from street cleansing tasks to clear pavements to ensure at the very least access to essential services, (ie from car parks to shopping areas, the High Street in Burnham, Market Street in Highbridge, the Post Office) was possible.
Thereafter priorities will be agreed by the Town Council (via the Clerk’s office) in consultation with Sedgemoor District Council.
In order to encourage self help, the Town Council has arranged for eight grit bins to be placed around Burnham and Highbridge, in the following locations: Burnham-on-Sea High Street, by the water feature, by Homehardware and by the Post Office, Stoddens Road, Pepperrall Road, Market Street, Coronation Road, Morland Road/North Avenue.
Realistically there is no way that every street in our towns can be kept clear of snow and ice, but the Town Council feels that these measures will re-assure our residents that it is doing its part in helping to ensure that essential services can be maintained during severe weather. We hope that residents and local businesses will feel able to do their part (by clearing pavements near their homes or businesses). No-one who takes reasonable measures to clear snow and ice from their property or maintain access to it need fear being sued in the event of an accident. Salt is widely available and we would encourage everyone to keep a stock, and would particularly ask residents to assist neighbours less able to clear their own pavements.
Both the County and District Council depots currently have a good supply of salt, but please bear in mind that their staff also have to make their way to the depot, and may themselves find difficulty in doing so safely if they live off the beaten track.
For further information please contact: Somerset County Council’s Road and Transport division: 0845 345 9155 or visit www.somerset.gov.uk/winterservice, contact the Town Council by telephoning 01278 788088 or by email to: firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.burnham-highbridge.org
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