Keep Westminster Moving In The Snow
20th December 2010
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Westminster City Council are trying to keep the city centre moving as the temperatures plummet even further this week.

The council has also urged residents to use common sense and help to make their local area safer for everyone by clearing snow in front of homes and businesses. People are also being urged to ignore the scare stories that clearing snow could result in them being sued.

After last year's bad weather Westminster's council was the first to tell people to ignore over zealous health and safety warnings and not be afraid to pick up the shovels and salt!

Westminster's official guide to clearing ice and snow is as follows:

1. DO NOT USE HOT WATER. This will melt the slow, but will replace it with black ice, increasing the risk of injury.

 2. If shovelling snow: Use a shovel with the widest blade available. Make a line down the middle of your path first, so you have a safe surface to walk on. Then you can simply shovel the snow from the centre to the sides.

 3. Spread some ordinary table salt on the area you have cleared to prevent any ice forming. Ordinary salt will work and can be purchased cheaply from any local shop, but avoid spreading on plants or grass.

  4. Use the sun to your advantage. Simply removing the top layer of snow will allow the sun to melt any ice beneath, however you will need to cover any ice with salt to stop refreezing overnight.

Westminster City Council leader, Colin Barrow, said: "We’ll be doing our bit, and we have plenty of grit and manpower to ensure the city keeps moving. But we also need a return to common sense and for people not to be afraid to pitch in and help themselves and anyone else who may be vulnerable in the cold weather. This includes checking in on that elderly or disabled neighbour and if necessary, picking up a shovel and clearing away any compacted ice and snow which may making an area dangerous. We've taken our own legal advice on this, and as long people do it properly, they have nothing to fear."

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