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Winter Service Guidance

Winter newsletter imageThe UK Roads Liason Group have developed a number of key guidance documents for winter preparations.  

The National Winter Service Research Group (NWSRG) is one of the key sources for current winter service guidance - click here for more.


As of 19 March 2019

Practical Guidance Documents


The latest (2016) version of the UK Roads Liaison Group’s national code of good practice for highway maintenance matters, 'Well-managed Highway Infrastructure', no longer provides detailed guidance to practitioners regarding the delivery of the winter service.

Instead, and recognising the technical quality of its work and level of expertise residing within the NWSRG, the UK Roads Board, on behalf of the UKRLG, has requested the NWSRG to make its Practical Guide generally available to all practitioners and interested parties, as it is considered to constitute the best way of providing national best practice guidance on these issues.

Background to the Practical Guide is available here.  As work in each subject area is completed, a section of the Guide is produced and made available for use by NWSRG Members. To see the latest sections of the Practical Guide click here.

As of September 18 2013

Appendix H has been superseded with the revised Appendix published on the 18 September 2013.

This latest revision of Appendix H has been carried out under the direction of the NWSRG on behalf of the UKRLG and UKRB using information from the NWSRG Practical Guide for Winter Service (Practical Guide) and NWSRG member organisations, as well as other recent winter service research and information.

The guidance and recommendations contained within Appendix H relate to national Best Practice and it is recognised that local circumstances, including financial and other resource constraints, as well as political influences etc. can vary widely across the country. Authorities and operators will need to take all of these factors fully into account, when devising and revising their Winter Service policies and plans. Some of the recommendations and practices will, if adopted, also take a number of years to implement. For example, it is recognised that, in certain cases it could potentially take up to around 10 years or so for a major programme of change to be fully implemented.

The NWSRG Practical Guide is updated regularly with the latest research and information and on a different timeline to Well–maintained Highways. Therefore, differences may exist between this document and the NWSRG Practical Guide.

Update available here.

As of November 29th 2011

The UKRLG has revised the winter content of Well-maintained Highways. This revision is a consolidation of all previous UKRLG winter guidance documents and includes new information on salt spreading capability, salt moisture content and time of spreading.

As of 24 December 2010

The revised guidance supersedes the guidance provided in “Winter Service Guidance for Local Authority Practitioners” and “Recommended Precautionary Treatments and Post Treatments including Revised Salt Spread Rates” [see below in the table to access this document, published 24 December 2010].

The revised guidance includes the recommendation from the Quarmby Review on the “Resilience of England’s Transport Systems in Winter” to adopt a resilience benchmark of 12 days/48 runs for full pre-season stockholding (Recommendation 2a) which is to be considered good practice This is in addition to the recommendation for a 6-days resilience standard in terms of number of days continuous severe conditions salting on a defined Minimum Winter Network for the overall and core winter periods (Recommendation 2).

It is advised that those local highway authorities that have used the simplified salt spreading rate tables in the previous version of Well-maintained Highways should review the new caveats that have been added, particularly within Appendix H of the guidance.

The revised guidance is available in Section 13 and Appendix H of Well-maintained Highways

Displaying 1 - 6 of 6
Title Type Published
Winter Service Guidance for Local Authority Practioners - Recommended Precautionary Treatments and Post Treatments Including Revised Salt Spread Rates
Winter Service Guidance 24/12/10
Well-maintained Highways - tracked changes
Codes of Practice - published prior to 18 October 2016,Winter Service Guidance 18/09/13
Well-maintained Highways - Code of Practice
Codes of Practice - published prior to 18 October 2016,Winter Service Guidance 18/09/05
UKRLG Report Lessons from the Severe Weather July 2009
Codes of Practice - published prior to 18 October 2016,Winter Service Guidance 1/07/09
Transportation Professional November 2013
Transportation Professional - news article,Winter Service Guidance 1/11/13
Transportation Professional April 2011
Transportation Professional - news article,Winter Service Guidance 1/04/11