With winter on the horizon, our fleet of gritters are now on standby, 24-hours-a-day, seven days a week, until next May and are ready to keep the city moving during periods of ice and snow. Sent out when ice is predicted on the city’s road surfaces, the gritters also plough and spread grit before, during and after snowfall.

In addition, Sheffield’s two salt barns are already full in preparation for dealing with whatever the weather might have in store.

From 10am on Wednesday 28th November, a team from Streets Ahead will be at Barkers Pool in the city centre to answer all your winter-related questions.

Cllr. Lewis Dagnall, Cabinet Member for Environment and Streetscene at Sheffield City Council, said:

Our gritting teams work really hard to make sure that we keep Sheffield’s roads moving during the winter months and they do a great job.

Following a long period of freezing temperatures last year, we’re really keen to spread the message about how local people can help by using their nearest grit bin to keep residential streets clear, as well as looking out for elderly neighbours during wintry weather.

Residents are also urged to check their nearest grit bins regularly throughout the winter months and let us know if they need re-filling so that there’s always grit available when it’s most needed.

Project Director for Operational Services at Streets Ahead, Melissa Wise, said:

We look after over 600 miles of urban and rural roads in Sheffield and grit a higher percentage of our roads than other local Councils. October is the start of our winter maintenance period and our fleet is well prepared.

Our winter maintenance service operates whenever the weather demands and we plan for winter well in advance with a good stock of salt, as well as a team of drivers on hand ready to take to the roads when the bad weather arrives.

Our gritters have state of the art technology which includes automatic routing, like a SatNav, as well as automatic gritting programmes. These help to improve our winter maintenance service as the navigation system guides the driver along the pre-programmed route.

Last year, art students from schools and colleges across the city helped design three new winter coats for the Streets Ahead gritters; The Bear, Steel City Gritter and Snowy Steve.

This year, Streets Ahead have a brand new team member in the form of Yolly the Yeti, our winter mascot.

Yolly has expertise in spreading grit and helping others prepare for snowy conditions and will be the new furry face of winter in Sheffield.

For more information about gritting routes and winter advice, visit www.sheffield.gov.uk/winter, call 01142734567 or follow @sccstreetsahead on Twitter for updates during bad weather and to report empty grit bins.