Although we call it ‘grit’ what we actually spread in car parks, pavements and on roads when we organise your winter gritting maintenance is either rock salt or marine salt. Both salt products lower the freezing point of moisture on the road surface, so ice or snow that has already formed will melt and will prevent more ice forming. Salt doesn’t directly melt snow because if first mixes with the snow and a saline solution forms when the melting point lowers. This is why salt is spread in advance of snowfall so it creates the saline solution and reduces the possibility of snow and ice forming and both reduces the need for snow clearance and makes the operation much more effective.
Peter Boniface – Operations Manager, Clearway Gritting, St Albans, Hertfordshire, said:
‘Our gritting company offers winter gritting services to clients across the South East in Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Hertfordshire, Essex, Cambridgeshire and Greater London. As our fleet has expanded and our operating range has increased, we have repeatedly reviewed our salt providers for each winter gritting season. For the last two seasons we have signed up with one salt supplier with a guarantee that we can get all the salt supplies we require, which in the last winter gritting season was between 3-4,000 tonnes of salt.’
Peter Boniface – Operations Manager, Clearway Gritting, St Albans, Hertfordshire, continued:
‘Last season, we made the decision to switch entirely from rock salt (mined and unsustainable) to the renewable resource that is white marine salt. White marine salt also has the added benefit that it is purer than the rock salt as it does not contain the clay impurities that clients do not want walked into their buildings.’
‘Our salt supplier imports salt from Ibiza. Although Ibiza is typically known as a holiday destination the country also has large natural salt flats in the National Park of Ses Salines, where salt production has continued for hundreds of years. When the salt water enters the flats, the sun eventually evaporates the water leaving the salt. Most of the salt is exported to Northern Europe and is not only used for ‘gritting’ but will be the same product (although different size) to be found on a dinner table. We are confident that we will be using good quality salt when we are gritting the car parks, retail parks, and hospitals across the South East during the forthcoming winter gritting season.’
For more information read: Largest centralised and winter gritting and snow clearance fleet in South East, Plan your winter gritting requirements while the sun is shining, Clearway Gritting work with County Councils to improve winter gritting services