Council and state plan for winter

Donegal County Council plans to have its salt barns filled by the end of July, county councillors have heard.

Donegal County Council plans to have its salt barns filled by the end of July, county councillors have heard.

Sinn Féin Cllr. Jack Murray, chairperson of the council’s roads and transportation strategic policy committee, commended the council for its preparations. The council also plans to erect a regional salt barn in the Stranorlar area.

The state’s difficulties in securing road salt last winter left road travel treacherous, with some people stranded during the prolonged freeze.

At Thursday’s meeting of the strategic policy committee, members heard there are 80,000 tons of road salt in the state, with 50,000 tons in storage depots and 30,000 tons in local authority depots. The National Roads Authority is tendering for an additional 130,000 tons, giving the state more than 200,000 tons by autumn.

In comparison, the committee heard, there were 30,000 tons of salt available in the state at the start of last winter. “It’s a huge increase,” Cllr. Murray said.