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To:                              Joint Transportation Board

By:                              Andrew Loosemore – Head of Highway Asset Management

Date:                          1st November 2018

Subject:                    Local Winter Service Plan

Classification:         Information only


Summary:  This report outlines the arrangements that have been made between Kent County Council and Maidstone Borough Council to provide a local winter service in the event of an operational snow alert in the borough/district




1. Kent County Council Highways, Transportation & Waste (KCC HT&W) takes its winter service responsibilities very seriously and is proactive as well as reactive to winter weather conditions.  Winter service costs KCC in the region of £3.2m every winter and needs careful management to achieve safety for the travelling public and to be efficient. The Highways Operations teams in HT&W work to ensure that the winter service standards and decisions made are consistent across the whole county. 


HT&W prepares an annual Winter Service policy and plan which are used to determine actions that will be taken to manage its winter service operations. The policy was approved at the KCC Environment, Planning and Transport Cabinet Committee on 20th September 2018 and subsequently signed off by the Cabinet Member.


District based winter service plans


2. The Local Winter Service Plan for the Maidstone Borough is a working document.  It will evolve and be revised as necessary throughout the year.  The document will be available on the KCC website.  This document complements the KCC Winter Service Policy and Plan 2018/19. Following successful work in previous years with district councils, arrangements have again been put in place this year whereby labour from district councils can be used during snow days. Additionally, HT&W will supply a quantity of a salt/sand mixture to district councils to use on the highway network. The details are contained in the local district winter plan which enhances the work that HT&W will continue to do in providing a countywide winter service. The local plan comes into effect when a snow operational alert is declared that affects the district of Maidstone.


Pavement clearance


3. Areas for clearing pavements have been identified in the local plan. These are the areas where local knowledge has indicated that people are concerned and would most like to be kept clear when there is snow and ice.




4. The work that our contracted farmers have done in recent years is greatly appreciated and has made a big difference in keeping rural areas clear on snow days. Again, this year farmers will have predetermined local routes and will use their own tractor and KCC ploughs for clearing snow. The ploughs supplied are serviced by KCC each year. Each farmer will have plans detailing the roads that that they are responsible for ploughing.  When snow reaches a depth of 50mm on roads in their areas the farmers will commence ploughing notifying KCC as agreed in their contract. A list of farmers and their contact details can be found in the local plan, (although some personal information will not be available via this report or the website due to General Data Protection Regulations). 




5. The arrangements for working in partnership with the district councils in recent years has proved to be very successful and the continuing arrangement will enable HT&W to provide an effective winter service across the county.




6. Members of the Board are asked to note this report.




Background documents:

Kent County Council Winter Service Policy and Plan 2018/19



Contact officer:

Susan Laporte -Tel: 03000 414141