Winter maintenance: Staying ahead with proactive gritting

The importance of gritting should never go under appreciated and neither should the significance of being proactive in your winter maintenance. Businesses are accountable for all injuries in the working environment and the safety of employees is paramount. Statistics from the Health & Safety Executive show slipping and tripping to be the single most common cause of the 693,000 non-fatal self-reported injuries in 2019/2020 in UK workplaces.


As we enter winter, freezing weather and icy roads rear their slippery heads once more. Ice can more than triple the likelihood of a slip, leading to claims of around £10,000 or more per accident. Here at Chequers, we’ve introduced a new winter maintenance service, including proactive gritting and snow clearance. Our new service is designed to give our clients peace of mind, a type of emergency service that uses forecasts to proactively grit locations without the client needing to lift a finger.


Staying one step ahead


Gritting is essential during winter. Not only does it meet health and safety standards but, if companies don’t grit around their workplace, they will be liable to compensation. It’s not enough to be reactive, gritting needs to be done early and planned ahead for maximum effect. Our nationwide services are automatically triggered by Met Office forecasts, which are monitored daily at the exact location of client’s sites, utilising national web cam footage. The default trigger is a temperate of 0c or below during a 24-hour period from 9am. However, we can also install bespoke custom triggers that can be agreed with the client.


By using Met Office and state of the art weather reports from the East Anglia University, we know exactly what the weather is going to do over a 24-hour time period. For example: If by 2pm the road temperature levels are due to reach a temperature of zero or below, this will trigger a gritting service for those customers that have bought our service. The customer never once has to notify us, because we already know. All we do is give them the heads up to let them know their site has been triggered for gritting and it’ll be done between 6am and 6pm the following day – this is the optimum time for gritting to take place.


Peace of mind


The majority of gritting tends to really kick off from January onwards, but can be required as early as October. However, in the north of England, it tends to start much earlier. It’s smart to sign up for gritting ahead of the season as temperature drops are common in the UK. If the temperature drops too low and you’re not ready, that’s when slips, trips, and falls can happen.


Proactive gritting is all about giving businesses peace of mind that their site is covered for any cold weather conditions. It doesn’t matter how early a client sets up; pricing is agreed in advance and clients are charged once a gritting has been triggered.


We give our clients complete clarity. We track all of our activity, from GPS to our sites. Everything is automatically logged and ready for the client to track so they’re always in the loop and getting their money’s worth. In fact, we can install cameras at key operational sites when snow begins to settle. Clients can then see for themselves when a site is gritted, safe and clear of snow.


Response time


A mix of machinery is employed, from large vehicle spreaders and mechanical snow ploughs for open spaces, to smaller spreaders and manual techniques for hard-to-reach areas. If any additional gritting or snow clearance is required, a client can call the Chequers control room and the team will be onsite within two hours. Being a specialist, we are able to innovate to any need, be flexible towards any demand.


Although part of Chequers winter maintenance offering, this is a standalone service that’s solely focussed on gritting. If you’re thinking of being proactive this winter, visit:

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