TfL and London Councils' snow and ice plan to keep London moving during severe winter weather

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The Met Office has forecasted temperatures to plummet to -4°C in London on Wednesday, with weather remaining cold throughout the week and severe frosts.

Transport for London (TfL) and London Councils have joined forces to keep London moving this week during the severe weather conditions.

With temperatures again plummeting below 0°C, TfL and London Councils have developed coordinated plans alongside emergency services to keep the transport system and its network of road, rail and river routes open. These include roads and footways around bus garages, railway stations, hospitals and police, fire and ambulance stations across London.

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On the Underground, plans are in place when winter weather is forecast. These include running a large fleet of de-icing trains, thousands of heated rail points to keep rails as clear as possible and treating platforms to keep them safe for customers.

To keep the TfL rail network moving, points heaters are in operation and teams of staff are available to grit stations along the DLR, with similar activities happening across the London Overground and Elizabeth line. Stations have been gritted and de-icer applied to the rails to ensure minimal disruption.

Thousands of tons of salt have been made available to TfL and London boroughs to ensure that all road users, including delivery drivers, pedestrians and cyclists, can continue to get around the capital. 

A fleet of road gritters are being deployed as required across London to keep roads clear, and arrangements are in place to enable boroughs to share salt stores with each other if required.

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TfL staff clearing the platform at West FinchleyTfL staff clearing the platform at West Finchley
TfL staff clearing the platform at West Finchley | TfL

Glynn Barton, chief operating officer at TfL, said: “We have done everything possible to ensure we have well-rehearsed procedures in place to minimise disruption to the network during freezing conditions. 

“Our staff are working around the clock to help keep the rail and strategic road networks up and running, as well as ensuring that footways and cycling routes remain safe. I would urge customers and visitors to the capital to check before they travel during cold and icy weather, using the TfL Go app, our website or TfL social media channels.”

Cllr Kieron Williams, London Councils executive member for climate change, transport and environment, said: “Boroughs are working flat out to ensure London’s roads are safe for all users throughout the cold weather, having ensured there is enough salt available at key locations across the capital to deal with the challenge of frozen roads and pavements.

“Boroughs are responsible for 95% of London’s road network and our highways teams continue to monitor high-tech weather forecasts, ready to treat the roads and pavements with salt as soon as conditions demand it.

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“We are focusing on gritting key areas around stations and bus stops, schools and hospitals, as well as listening to Londoners about other priorities such as pavements and cycle routes.”  

The Met Office has forecasted temperatures to plummet to -4°C in London tonight (Wednesday January 17) with weather remaining cold throughout the week and severe overnight frosts.

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