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Gritters battle big freeze

PUBLISHED: 15:33 18 December 2009 | UPDATED: 15:58 03 July 2010

FLEETS of gritting lorries are back out in force today in a bid to keep Norfolk's roads from icing up.

With up to six inches of snow falling in parts of the eastern region efforts have been continuing to tackle the worst of the winter weather.

FLEETS of gritting lorries are back out in force today in a bid to keep Norfolk's roads from icing up.

With up to six inches of snow falling in parts of the eastern region efforts have been continuing to tackle the worst of the winter weather.

Further gritting runs are expected throughout the days ahead, but it is not expected that snow will be as heavy as that experienced last night.

While Great Yarmouth escaped with just a light dusting of snow, other areas - particularly in the north west of the county saw up to 18 inch snow drifts.

Nearly 150 of Norfolk's schools were closed today - many due to the snowy or icy conditions, but others due to no electricity or heating.

Apart from the usual challenges of clearing snow and ice, the high winds added to the difficulty - with fallen trees blocking roads.

The county council's gritting depot in Sculthorpe was left without electricity or heating - with the crew using tea lights and a camping stove to ensure that they were able to carry on throughout the night, before back-up generators were available this morning.

Farmers are also contracted across Norfolk to help clear roads with tractors and snowploughs.

Last night a small number of farmers were asked to assist to clear roads and help members of the public affected by fallen trees or snow drifts in the worst affected parts of the county.

The 55 gritting routes, which make up a full county run, cover about 1,900 miles of road. A full county run costs over £37,000 and uses around 285 tonnes of salt.

There are seven salt domes around Norfolk stocking a total of 10,000 tonnes of salt.

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