A SNOW Code has been published to help volunteers keep pathways clear.
Northumberland County Council’s Highways and Neighbourhood Services team has issued the advice to town and parish councils to allay fears that people who remove snow could be sued if someone slips over on the area cleared.
The authority says that if people follow the code it is unlikely any damages will be awarded against them.
It is also likely that most businesses’ third party insurance will cover claims outside their premises, as will the public liability part of a householder insurance.
The Government’s Snow Code includes making sure that when moving snow you do not block other people’s paths, the road, drains or gullies, and not using hot water to melt snow as it is likely to re-freeze and turn to black ice.
Salt spreading should be repeated at regular intervals. Ordinary salt or dishwasher salt can be used at a ratio of a tablespoon per square metre. Spreading the cleared area before nightfall will help to prevent re-freezing overnight, and additional salt should be used for steep slopes or steps. Sand or ash can also be used to give grip underfoot.
It is easier to clear fresh snow so it is better to start early. Clear a small path down the middle of the area to be treated first to give you a safe surface to work from.
Any organisations interested in forming volunteer snow squads can contact the council team on 0845 600 6400, or email Ask@northumberland.gov.uk