Transport NI will install four large grit boxes at strategic points in Derry within eight weeks in order to boost local communities’ ability to deal with inclement weather.
Sinn Féin Foyleside councillor Mickey Cooper said the roads authority has agreed to periodically replenish the silos in advance of and during particulary cold spells.
He said: “I have been lobbying Transport NI hard on this issue for some time and it’s anticipated the boxes will be in place before the end of the financial year.
“Through the scheme four large grit boxes will be located in Creggan, Shantallow, Waterside and the rural district.
“The logistics will involve consignments of grit being provided by ‘road service’ for collection and distribution by community organisations during periods of extreme weather. The grit will be stored in the boxes which will be administered by the local community organisations.”
Colr. Cooper said the scheme will service areas that might not tick all the boxes necessary to qualify for Transport NI’s gritting schedule.
“It can be then distributed into areas of the city by where grit boxes are not provided by Roads Service as the streets in question do not meet the criteria for a grit box. The community organisations will be able to liaise with elected reps and other community activists to identify where the demand for grit exists which will ensure the supply is used most effectively.
He said “residents of streets which are regularly affected by icy footpaths but which dont have a grit box will be delighted this additional service is now available”.