Business and Economy

Council urges people not to use the roads on Friday morning

Gritting lorry

Posted on: 1 March 2018

Devon County Council Highways is urging people not to use the roads tomorrow morning (Friday 2 March).

Continued snow in parts overnight, and freezing rain, on top of sub-zero temperatures, make driving conditions potentially dangerous, the Council says.

“People may be tempted, waking up on Friday morning morning, to think it’s business as usual and try to go about driving to work as normal. But they shouldn’t.

Councillor Stuart Hughes

“The roads are snowy and icy, and until we’re out of this immediate cold snap, and until gritters and snow ploughs have had full chance to make the network safer to use, we’re advising to stay off the road,” said Cllr Stuart Hughes, the Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for Highway management.

The warning follows a day of heavy snow fall in many parts of the county, including vehicles that had to be left abandoned on roads that have become impassable.

The Council, the Police and other partners, have been working through the night to attend to the road network.

Vehicles left stranded on Haldon Hill prompted Chudleigh Town Council and Kenn Parish Council to open emergency respite shelters for drivers and passengers on Thursday evening. Okehampton Community College opened its doors with refreshments and blankets, staffed by volunteers for Devon County Council, to people stuck on the nearby A30.

“Although the immediacy of the situation was on Thursday, prolonged cold weather over night means that it’s still not safe to use the roads on Friday morning,” says Cllr Hughes. “We ask people to heed the warnings, use their common sense, and make other arrangements in the morning.”

The list of Devon schools planning to remain closed on Friday, according to the Council’s website, stands at more than 300.

Devon County Council is reminding people of the following advice:

  • Avoid overnight travel as roads are expected to be hazardous this evening (Thursday) with less traffic, colder temperatures and freezing rain;
  • If you have vulnerable or elderly neighbours, think about how they could possibly be helped through the cold spell;
  • Try to maintain indoor temperatures to at least 18C, particularly if you are not mobile, have long-term illness or are 65 or over. NHS Choices has more information on staying healthy during cold weather;
  • Listen to local radio for updates on current weather conditions and ensure you are stocked with food and medications
  • Check out any school closures and sign up for alerts for any school by clicking on ‘Alert Me’.

For more information and travel advice from Devon County Council visit: or for updates on Twitter follow @DevonAlert

20 comments on “Council urges people not to use the roads on Friday morning

  1. Emma Wilson says:

    Thank you for cleaning are roads now. When do the bus’s
    running again . when do you cleaning the road again because it very very ice now on the payment and the road’s.
    From Emma Wilson

    • david.beasley says:

      Hi Emma,
      Stagecoach will be able to tell you when and which services are running – which pavements and roads are of particular concern?

  2. Sam fryer says:

    I had to abandon my car yesterday on Hamlin way paignton and then walk home as the hill was impossible to drive up i obviously need to collect my car but given the weather today I have left it has the road now been cleared otherwise I cannot drive it away due to being a rear wheel drive automatic. From the state of it yesterday it didn’t look like it had been gritted at all the whole road was a car park.

    • david.beasley says:

      Hi Sam, i’m sorry to hear that you had to leave your car and I hope you have know been able to retrieve it. The South Devon Link Road is a primary gritting route and would have been treated repeatedly over the last few days. Unfortunately once more snow falls and the road surface freezes again that treatment becomes less effective

  3. Kaz says:

    Hi I had to leave my car at the bottom of Hamlin way by the lights what are the roads like now

  4. Liz says:

    I had to walk to a hospital appointment in exeter this morning and was pleased to see 2 gritters on the journeys along Heavitree Road. Thank you to the employees who are out there doing their best.

  5. Mark says:

    Hi Have the major routes in Exeter started to be cleared and gritted?

    • Hi Mark, we’re certainly starting to see the blackness of the roads coming through now in Exeter as the grit and traffic are improving the road conditions. The priority remains the A roads and the primary salting network.

  6. RONALD says:

    is the road passable between Kingsbridge and California Cross please ?

    • Thanks for your comment. Unfortunately we’re not able to respond to individual road updates as the situation is changing constantly. The A roads are a priority for today. On the whole our main A roads are passable with care apart from the exceptions mentioned in the release, and many minor roads are still impassable and may continue to be for a few days.

  7. JANE says:

    So why are people on the roads when being advised not to drive?


    • The advice is not to. That’s the advice recommended, but inevitably people make their own decisions. What we want is to avoid accidents and people getting unnecessarily stuck.

  8. Ryan says:

    Can you please let me know if any gritters are going to be sent out to give some attention to the road between George Nympton and Kings Nympton?

    • Hi Ryan, same response to you as to Ronald. We’re focusing on the primary salting network, which are roads that take by far the bulk of the traffic. Thanks.

  9. Ray Jones says:

    Barr k road is still a problem. It is the way to thevHoital why is that.

    • Thanks Ray. I’ve reported that. Certainly Barrack Road’s on our primary salting network, so it should be receiving attention. Our team’s looking into it now. Thanks.

    • Hi Ray. One of our officers just went out to walk that route – that’s an important road to the Hospital – and I’m pleased to report that it’s clear. Thanks.

  10. Elaine says:

    We are traveling on the A30 towards the M5.
    The A30 in Cornwall was cleared the Devon stretch is very bad in places. Are you sending the gritters out again?
    Not seen any ploughs or gritters or emergency vehicles on the main roads.
    The slip roads are treacherous with lorries struggling to join the A30.

    • Hi Elaine. Highways teams are working hard across the county. The A30 is managed by the Highways Agency, rather than ourselves, but we’ll relay your message. Thanks for letting us know about the slip roads.

  11. Roberto Franceschini says:

    Thanks DCC for the very valuable work you are doing on the highway network ands for providing information and advice on the viability of the road system.

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