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Scottish roads in winter



 
 
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  #1  
Old October 9th 03, 05:58 PM
Andy P
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Default Scottish roads in winter

We were thinking of going to the Highlands in February half term. Having
never been in winter before my girlfriend is a bit concerned about the
conditions of the roads (let alone the hills), having seen the snow gates on
the A82 etc. How often do main or minor roads become difficult to pass in
winter?


  #2  
Old October 9th 03, 06:49 PM
Bernard Hill
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Default Scottish roads in winter

In article , Andy P
writes
We were thinking of going to the Highlands in February half term. Having
never been in winter before my girlfriend is a bit concerned about the
conditions of the roads (let alone the hills), having seen the snow gates on
the A82 etc. How often do main or minor roads become difficult to pass in
winter?



Not often. Approximately when you see on the news the pictures of
blizzards and cars slid off the road. The snowgates are closed to stop
cars driving into areas where they are at risk, but in my experience
they don't close more than once maybe a year, and often not at all.

However I can't guarantee the weather in Feb 04 g.

Minor roads can be worse, but really there aren't any in the Highlands.
The reason snow stops most people getting to work is that they can't get
to the main road, ie down their drive, or down the unclassified road.


Bernard Hill
Selkirk, Scotland

  #3  
Old October 9th 03, 07:09 PM
Clive
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Default Scottish roads in winter


"Andy P" wrote in message
...
We were thinking of going to the Highlands in February half term. Having
never been in winter before my girlfriend is a bit concerned about the
conditions of the roads (let alone the hills), having seen the snow gates

on
the A82 etc. How often do main or minor roads become difficult to pass in
winter?

I work all over the Highlands and the 'gates' you mention are very rarely
closed. Unlike England gritting up here is very well done and it's very rare
for main roads to be icy.

However, side roads are another matter. They take a lower priority and often
they are ungritted and slippy.

Clive


  #4  
Old October 9th 03, 10:48 PM
Bernard Hill
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Default Scottish roads in winter

In article , Chris Street
writes

Best of all, learn winter driving skills and skid management.


Yeah, that's true. I was born in Yorkshire and learned to drive there in
the days when we got snow g.

Then I moved to Dorset and the chaos that a little snow brought was
unbelievable

a) no salting or gritting and there were literally NO snow ploughs at
all
b) drivers going up slight hills in 1st and sliding and getting stuck.
c) general lack of skid management skills.

I very nearly didn't get home one night because of idiots blocking the
road.


Bernard Hill
Selkirk, Scotland

  #5  
Old October 9th 03, 11:40 PM
Paul Saunders
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Default Scottish roads in winter

Chris Street wrote:

Best of all, learn winter driving skills and skid management.


Colin McRae Rally is good for that... ;-)

Paul
--
The October Project 2003
http://www.wildwales.fsnet.co.uk/october/october.html
http://www.wilderness-wales.co.uk
http://www.photosig.com/go/users/userphotos?id=118749


  #6  
Old October 10th 03, 09:18 AM
Peter Clinch
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Default Scottish roads in winter

Chris Street wrote:

Main roads are kept open - the Scots expect snow and prepare for it.


But make a point of washing your car, including the underneath, when you
go. The amount of salt corrosion can be pretty amazing if you don't
keep on top of it.

Unlike the feckless idiots down here the councils actually read the
forecast and grit the roads.


There is a degree of reason to the lack of gritting and ploughing dahn
sahf, and that's the distinct possibility that the cost of the
infrastructure to do it to Scottish levels would be considerably greater
than the cost of problems caused by not doing it.
If you want lots of gritting lorries and ploughs standing idle in a
council yard 363 days of a typical year then run for the local council
on that platform...

Pete.
--
Peter Clinch University of Dundee
Tel 44 1382 660111 ext. 33637 Medical Physics, Ninewells Hospital
Fax 44 1382 640177 Dundee DD1 9SY Scotland UK
net http://www.dundee.ac.uk/~pjclinch/

  #7  
Old October 10th 03, 10:37 AM
Bernard Hill
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Default Scottish roads in winter

In article , Chris Malcolm
writes
(Chris Street) writes:

OTOH, I rode that bike safely through London streets which were
completely deserted of moving traffic because they were covered in
solid packed snow which the locals had no clue about to drive over,
all those who tried it sliding into the gutter and abandoning their
cars.
--


Some years ago I happend to be on business in Munich. The night before
my departure it snowed unexpectedly and next day the streets were white
and uncleared, 1-2" of snow. I despaired of getting to the airport. But
the taxi came and all was well. The Germans drove gently and well on
their snow-packed streets and I saw not one accident.



Bernard Hill
Selkirk, Scotland

  #8  
Old October 10th 03, 11:08 AM
Reid©
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Default Scottish roads in winter

Following up to Bernard Hill

Then I moved to Dorset and the chaos that a little snow brought was
unbelievable

a) no salting or gritting and there were literally NO snow ploughs at
all
b) drivers going up slight hills in 1st and sliding and getting stuck.
c) general lack of skid management skills.

I very nearly didn't get home one night because of idiots blocking the
road.


Why was it unbelievable?
If snow is rare there is little investment in equipment.
Drivers generally have little experience.

Snow will be cleared efficiently where it happens a lot
Less efficiently where it is rare.

This is a fact of economic life that many people do not seem able
to grasp, I heard a woman on the radio last time it snowed in
London say "It hardly ever happens so why cant they deal with
it?"
--
Mike Reid
"Art is the lie that reveals the truth" P.Picasso
UK walking "http://www.fellwalk.co.uk" -- you can email [email protected] this site
Spain,cuisines and walking "http://www.fell-walker.co.uk" -- [email protected] all, it's a spamtrap
  #9  
Old October 10th 03, 11:59 AM
Stefan Beyer
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Default Scottish roads in winter

Bernard Hill wrote:



Some years ago I happend to be on business in Munich. The night before
my departure it snowed unexpectedly and next day the streets were white
and uncleared, 1-2" of snow. I despaired of getting to the airport. But
the taxi came and all was well. The Germans drove gently and well on
their snow-packed streets and I saw not one accident.


They do put winter tyres on, though. In fact I think you get fined, if
you have the wrong set of tyres on and some insurances might not want to
pay out in such a case.

Over here however, getting a second set of tyres for the 2 days every
few years there is a problem is not finanically viable.

Stefan



  #10  
Old October 10th 03, 12:09 PM
Chris Street
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Default Scottish roads in winter

Peter Clinch wrote:
Chris Street wrote:

Main roads are kept open - the Scots expect snow and prepare for it.



But make a point of washing your car, including the underneath, when you
go. The amount of salt corrosion can be pretty amazing if you don't
keep on top of it.

Unlike the feckless idiots down here the councils actually read the
forecast and grit the roads.



There is a degree of reason to the lack of gritting and ploughing dahn
sahf, and that's the distinct possibility that the cost of the
infrastructure to do it to Scottish levels would be considerably greater
than the cost of problems caused by not doing it.
If you want lots of gritting lorries and ploughs standing idle in a
council yard 363 days of a typical year then run for the local council
on that platform...


I don't doubt that they will have less equipment - it's when they screw
up and don't send out what little they have, or send it too late that
really annoys me.

Pete.


 




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