Driving safely in winter

13 January 2016

We work to keep trunk road network users safe while driving in severe weather conditions and to ensure that delays are minimised and accidents are prevented.

Snow and ice can cause disruption and increase the risks to pedestrians and motorists in winter.

Amey works closely with Transport Scotland and Traffic Scotland to keep these vital trunk roads clear and well-maintained in all weathers.

The Amey Winter Service Manager is responsible for all aspects of winter service provision including:

  • Ice prediction and weather forecasting service, including sensor calibration
  • Collection and management of weather data
  • Winter service decision making
  • Plant and communications
  • De-icing material stock levels and storage
  • Staff and Operative training and rosters
  • Inspection and maintenance of winter hardware
  • Maintaining records
  • Daily and annual reporting


Planning your journey

When travelling in winter we suggest you take time to carefully plan your journey before you set out.

There are some simple steps you can take to help prepare for a winter journey:

  • Check the weather forecast and road conditions
  • You can get live updates from the Traffic Scotland website and on social media - @trafficscotland
  • Traveline Scotland has information on all public transport services across Scotland - @TravelineScot
  • Pay attention to any Police warnings about potential hazards or black spots
  • Dress appropriately for winter weather – clothing and footwear - and carry a winter emergency kit in your vehicle
  • The emergency kit should include de-icer, a scraper, torch, fresh batteries, snow shovel, blanket, hot flask, first aid kit, battery jump leads and maps
  • If the weather is severe or warnings are in place about predicted hazardous weather conditions consider if your journey is necessary
  • Could your journey be delayed till weather and/or road conditions improve
  • If possible, consider alternative routes
  • If possible consider alternative forms of transport
  • Ensure you allow extra time for your journey
  • Ensure your vehicle is equipped to handle poor weather conditions
  • Make sure your mobile phone is fully charged
  • Inform others of your destination and anticipated arrival time
  • Consider fitting winter tyres or snow socks to your vehicle
  • TyreSafe can provide information and advice on tyre safety - @Tyresafe

Live updates

Traffic Scotland provides a range of services to help you plan your journey and ensure you stay safe while travelling.

These include:

  • Live information updates using data from intelligent systems and information provided by its partners
  • Full integration with the Met Office, providing weather information in real-time
  • A large network of viewable Live Traffic Cameras and weather stations
  • Traveline App for Android, iPhone, Windows and BlackBerry
  • Treatment maps, displaying where and when treatments will be carried out, uploaded on a daily basis
  • A 24/7, real-time, Twitter service - @TrafficScotland
  • The Traffic Scotland Internet Radio Service, providing three broadcasts each hour during the peak
  • The Multi-Agency Response Team*, ensuring any changes to the severity or area affected by the severe weather can be updated and provided to the public without delay.
  • A severe weather information strategy, delivered in association with Police, to warn and inform road users when significant disruption to the road network is expected during extreme weather
  • Increasing levels of personalisation, targeting specific road users and keeping them informed of winter actions and severe weather events applicable to them


Multi-Agency Response Team

Transport Scotland works closely with the police, Operating Companies and other key stakeholders to prepare for winter.

The Scottish Multi Agency Response Team (MART) works to improve the quality and timing of transport information and co-ordinates the flow of information to the between agencies and the public.

A Met Office representative ensures any changes to the severity or area affected by severe weather can be updated and provided to the public.

MART representatives are from:

  • Traffic Scotland
  • Transport Scotland
  • Met Office
  • Scotland TranServ (South West Operating Company)
  • Amey (South East Operating Company)
  • BEAR Scotland (North West and North East Operating Company)
  • First Scotrail
  • Network Rail
  • Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT)
  • Police Scotland
  • Society of Chief Officers of Transportation in Scotland (SCOTS)
  • Collaboration with the Met Office and Police Scotland helps us develop specific Road Travel Weather messages.

Get ready for winter