WORCESTERSHIRE County Council’s gritting teams are now officially on standby ready for when the weather turns colder.

Over the summer months, highways depots across the county have been re-stocked with over 14,000 tonnes of salt, which includes a 5,000-tonne reserve in case of an unusually harsh winter.

The fleet of 32 gritting vehicles and the teams that drive them are ready to cover Worcestershire's 1,000 miles of designated roads. Last winter, the teams clocked up more than 50,000 miles across the county. That's the equivalent of more than twice around the world.

The council will also be checking the county's 1,320 grit bins to ensure they are full. The grit bins are filled with a salt/grit mixture, for use on the public highway only, including footways.

Cllr Alan Amos said: "Our gritting teams do a fantastic job keeping Worcestershire moving throughout the winter months. They work in difficult conditions when it can be dark, icy and snowy. While most of us are asleep, they head out to help keep the county's roads open and safe.

"We encourage drivers not to take the work of the gritting teams for granted. Motorists should always drive safely and carefully, but especially in adverse weather conditions, even when roads have been treated."

There's also a variety of information about gritting operations online, including interactive maps which show designated gritting routes. Residents can also find their nearest grit bin online at www.worcestershire.gov.uk/gritting.