TRANSPORT boss Simon Spencer has heaped praise on the people who got out and about to help keep people moving during the recent wintry weather.
Deputy leader of Derbyshire County Council and cabinet member for highways and transport Councillor Spencer thanked his staff and volunteers who have helped by clearing snow and drving 4x4 vehicles during the cold snap.
Across the county the authority sent gritters out up to four times per day and used up to 1,000 tons of grit at the cost of £30,000 per day.
Councillor Spencer said: “Gritting and helping to keep the roads clear is a massive operation for us. But we’re not the only ones out there.
“Plenty of others do their bit to help, from our volunteer snow wardens gritting and shovelling snow on pavements and paths to the 4x4 drivers who offer their services to help care staff get to people who rely on their help.
“And there are countless others who selflessly go that extra mile to do an elderly neighbour’s shopping or clear pavements and even roads for the benefit of others.”
Across Derbyshire more than 50 farmers and contractors were signed up to help clear snow from roads and snow wardens from 69 town and parish councils volunteered to help clear pavements.
Councillor Spencer added: “Some may say that’s the council’s job – and it is, to a point. But with the best will in the world we cannot grit and clear snow from every mile of road in Derbyshire. We simply don’t have the money, time or resources.
“But we can use what we have wisely to get the best results possible. And by working together we can always achieve more.”
Volunteers driving 4x4 vehicles helped by to and from hospital for essential appointments such as for cancer treatment and dialysis.
The vehicles were also used to drive home care workers, other key county council staff and NHS staff on their rounds.
Drivers included countryside rangers from the county council and Peak District National Park, Peak 4x4 volunteers and a member of Derbyshire Volunteers Group.
Between January 18 and 21, the county council received 800 calls about gritting and 150 calls specifically about roads and pavements.