Date lodged: 1 November 2017
To ask the Scottish Government what minimum volume of grit it advises local authorities to have in preparation for the winter weather, and what its response is to reports that Dundee City Council has significantly reduced its supply.
Answered by: Humza Yousaf 9 November 2017
Salt supplies came under extreme pressure during the severe winters of 2008-09 and 2010-11. Despite this, no roads authority ran out of salt.
Scotland's 32 local authorities are responsible for the maintenance and safe operation of the local road network, including Winter Service Operations and its own salt management. This includes all footways, footpaths and cycle tracks not in private ownership.
Salt stocks are fundamental to a successful winter on our roads and we currently have more salt in stock than was used for the whole of last winter. National salt figures are published on Transport Scotland’s website: https://www.transport.gov.scot/publication/salt-group-situation-report/.
The Scottish Salt Group was established during the severe winter conditions early in 2010. The group includes representatives of Transport Scotland (TS), the Society of Chief Officers of Transportation in Scotland (SCOTS), the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) and the Society of Local Authority Chief Executives (SOLACE). The Scottish Salt Group monitored the restocking process throughout the summer and met with suppliers to confirm there is adequate salt production to meet the demand. Road authorities recognise the need to have good salt stocks in advance of the start of winter to increase resilience and reduce reliance on in-season restocking.
BEAR Scotland manages and maintains the North-East trunk roads on behalf of Transport Scotland and this includes the A90 and A92 within the Dundee City Council boundary.