We’re winter ready

Published: Friday, 8 December 2023

Havering Council’s gritters rolled out for the first time recently when temperatures dropped below zero.

The crew treated main routes around the borough with salt in order to keep everyone moving and help make conditions safer. 

The Council’s winter roads maintenance service also have vehicles ready for snow or ice should it arrive.

There is also a snow plough ready to clear roads, while the street cleaning team will continue to do their best to keep pavements and bridges as clear as possible.

In severe cold weather, we’ve got:

  • four gritting lorries on stand-by
  • 2,000 tonnes of salt in our depot – enough to grit up to over 380 miles of roads and sufficient for almost three weeks of continuous snowfall 
  • a team of winter heroes on-call 24/7 including weekends.

When Havering is hit with severe cold weather, as many roads as possible will be salted, with priority given to main roads, bus routes and roads linking motorways and hospitals.

Once priority roads are clear, the team will look at other roads (secondary routes) so that scheduled rubbish collections can still take place.

The roads are just one area that the Council is focusing on, it also has information and advice on keeping warm and healthy.

There are tips to look out for vulnerable relatives and neighbours during times of adverse weather. 

There is also information on where to report concerns over rough sleepers and how they can get help and support.

Plus guidance on staying safe both at home and around the borough.

Councillor Ray Morgon, Leader of Havering Council, said:

“Winter is coming but we’ve got it covered. We have teams on stand-by 24 hours a day to make sure we keep the borough moving, in the cold weather.

“Our staff have the tools and commitment to respond quickly to weather warnings to make sure our residents can get on with their lives safely and with as little disruption as possible.

“The Council also has a wealth of useful information on our website to make sure residents know how to stay warm and healthy through the coming months.”

Safety advice in winter weather

Make sure to consider where you park on narrower side roads during adverse weather. If possible, only park on one side of the road so our gritters can get through.

It will never be possible to cover every road and pavement in the borough, nor can it be guaranteed that surfaces are free of ice and snow at all times.

Even when icy streets have been treated, they can still be dangerous. Residents are advised to take extra care, and in heavy snow only travel if you have to.  

Rubbish and recycling collections 

In the event of heavy snow, rubbish and recycling collections may be affected.

Individual roads or cancelled services will be publicised on the Council's website and social media platforms.

Advice is available if waste and recycling has not been collected on a scheduled collection day, and the street or road appears to be have been missed.

Residents should continue to put out their waste and the Council will aim to collect when it is safe to do so.

Safety of residents and staff is the Council’s main priority.

People’s patience and understanding is always appreciated, especially during these times. 

School closures

In severe weather local schools may be affected.

Parents are advised to check individual schools' websites and social media for the latest updates.

Help us help you – Stay well this winter.

Stay warm

It is important to keep warm in winter – both inside and outdoors.

Keeping warm over the winter months can help to prevent colds, flu and more serious problems such as heart attacks, strokes, pneumonia and depression.

Heat your home to at least 18C (65F). You might prefer your main living room to be slightly warmer.

Keep your bedroom window closed on winter nights – breathing cold air can be bad for your health as it increases the risk of chest infections.

Working with partners, the Council has set up a network of warm spaces where residents can go to keep warm in a friendly, welcoming environment.