Council seeks gritting guide

Ballymena Council is seeking details of gritting carried out during a recent severe frost in the wake of reports of dangerous road conditions.

The Braid

Cllrs Monica Digney, Beth Adger, Sam Hanna, and Declan O’Loan all spoke out at last week’s first monthly meeting of 2015 to complain about a variety of routes in and around the town which they claimed were not gritted on time to counter the severe frost which set in early on Saturday evening, December 27.

These, they claimed, included the Largy Road, Portglenone, Rathkenny, the Ballymena road through Glenravel, Carnalbanagh, and the main Ballymoney line which, Ald Hanna, said was the scene of “something like seven smashes from 5pm on”.

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Acting Chief Executive Rodger McKnight told the meeting that he was aware of concerns and had asked an officer of Council to investigate the matter with Transport NI.

“There are protocols for what and where gritting takes place. I have asked for more detail...I am seeking that information as we speak,” he said.

Cllrs Digney and O’Loan queried why gritting was not carried out further in advance of the weather conditions on Saturday evening which, they said, were forecast.

“There was an amber warning for frost that whole day and evening - it wasn’t a thief that came in the night,” said Cllr Digney.