Council bemoans wait for rock salt

A council has described its wait for grit supplies as "pretty outrageous" as local authorities across the country spread their grit more thinly while waiting on more rock salt .

Harrow Council, in north west London, spread about 40 tonnes of grit on its roads on Wednesday night. The local authority now has 510 tonnes of remaining, less than four days at full gritting rate.

Susan Hall, the deputy council leader, said: "We'll do what we can but, if salt suppliers don't honour their obligations, it doesn't leave us much room for manoeuvre. It's pretty outrageous really."

The decision on which councils get given salt ahead of others was taken out of the hands of the bosses of the UK's rock salt mines and placed into a re-established Salt Cell, which was created to deal with the dreadful weather conditions in February last year.

The Cabinet Office Civil Contingencies Secretariat, Department for Transport, Highways Agency, Local Government Association and the Communities and Local Government Department now decide which areas need the supplies the most.

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