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General => General Discussion => Topic started by: mg on January 20, 2013, 07:00:28 PM



Title: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 20, 2013, 07:00:28 PM
Just wondered what your views were about people shovelling snow from Thames Ditton pavements.  I hate it.  I find that it creates one long path of slippery ice that I can't walk on.  If it freezes - which it will do tonight - I think that it is way more dangerous to have a pavement full of ice that you can't see, than a good layer of snow that you can get a grip on.

I have just been for a walk and one man was shovelling both sides of a long road.  Everyone walking down the road  was trying to avoid the part that he had cleared and were walking on the snow.  One poor woman with a stick was trying to find any snow left to walk on, she too hated the cleared path.

Just my view but I wondered what other people thought.  Not a year round topic - but just thought it would stop me moaning about it every year if I found out that the majority of people liked the pavements being shovelled.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Evergreen on January 20, 2013, 07:25:13 PM
I want to thank those good people who clear the snow off their frontage.  Surrey's advice is "You can help to make winter easier for everyone by clearing the ice and snow from pavements, around your business premises and outside yours or your neighbour's home if they need help" on their snow FAQ at http://www.surreycc.gov.uk/roads-and-transport/road-maintenance-and-cleaning/salting-and-gritting/frequently-asked-questions-gritting#4

I remember that the campaign to do this in the village was started by a resident (who was it?) and picked up by the RA - we should build a snowman to honour his memory each year.  


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Highways Contact on January 20, 2013, 09:32:20 PM
It really depends on what happens to the air temperature once the snow has fallen. If there is light snow then there will be a period when it is easy to walk on, but if it freezes solid to ice then it becomes very hazardous and hard to shift. If we have the resources, I'm sure that the best option is to shovel, ideally removing all snow back to the pavement. 



Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Ratty on January 21, 2013, 02:57:58 PM
The pavements that were cleared are clear. The pavements that weren't are now a mix of compacted ice and sludge.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Keith on January 21, 2013, 03:09:32 PM
Yes - we always try to clear along Church Walk.  Otherwise snow gets heavily compacted by a great deal of pedestrian traffic, then turns to really treacherous ice.  There are many small children, laden mothers and several older people who use the Walk, as well as commuters.  

I always put salt or salt grit down after clearing.  I did my frontage twice, on Friday & Sunday, and several passers-by were appreciative, which was nice - and of course it was another good chance to meet people and gossip.

Compare with Ashley Road, where many of the CW pedestrians go next - hardly anyone has cleared their frontage there and it is very treacherous.

Several good citizens cleared the pavement in the High St and I'm sure all the users were very grateful. 


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Juninho on January 21, 2013, 04:36:47 PM
I think I know what you mean about fresh snow to have a grip on vs ice... 

What I think has happened in the case you described is that the light snowfall has cleared by people walking and therefore not compacted down to ice and fresh snow has fallen but not iced up hence it is grippier?  And also the temperatures overnight have not dropped as much as they are prone to do and frozen the fresh snow.

Or also melting snow (that has not been cleared!) can also be very slippy!! In that case you would definately prefer the cleared path!!

In most cases though I believe it is better/safer to clear the snow - especially if (like Keith) after clearing the person is able to lay some grit and from what I recall we have grit bins spotted around!!

I am therefore very grateful to the people who do shovel it away on speer road/summer road!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8443745.stm

I better go and dig that shovel out of the back of my shed when I get home tonight!!!

Quote from: mg on January 20, 2013, 07:00:28 PM
Just wondered what your views were about people shovelling snow from Thames Ditton pavements.  I hate it.  I find that it creates one long path of slippery ice that I can't walk on.  If it freezes - which it will do tonight - I think that it is way more dangerous to have a pavement full of ice that you can't see, than a good layer of snow that you can get a grip on.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 21, 2013, 09:10:57 PM
Interesting to hear people's views - I would love to hear what elderly people thought.  (thus complimenting all who have responded).  To me compacted snow/ice and cleared paths are just as slippery - if I can, I choose to walk on non-compacted snow.  Ah well lets hope I don't have to drive my family mad with this again until next winter.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Admin on January 22, 2013, 01:02:06 PM
Item on home page.

I asked Peter Haynes for returns from the snow clearing volunteers, and the reports are uniformly positive with many noting highly appreciative comments from those passing by, especially the older passers-by.

Naturally the clearing should be done properly.  Peter was out gritting in some places where the paths have been cleared, and reports that he will now look for a manual drop-gritter, as humping grit around and sprinkling it from a flowerpot saucer is onerous.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Ratty on January 23, 2013, 09:35:45 AM
So are the public allowed to just help themselves from the council salt bins?


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Admin on January 23, 2013, 10:48:54 AM
For clearing the public pavements, this is allowed/tolerated.  Resident Richard Lanigan, who first took up the issue of snow clearance and drove it forward within the Association, had extensive dealings with SCC who, however, failed to supply additional public salt bins, prevented us from setting up our own on the public highways, and demanded a ridiculous fee for providing and filling further bins.  Businesses in Long Ditton have lately funded another salt bin set up by Surrey along the parade there (see Peter Hickman's saga on this in the Winter TD Today)

Obviously it is not allowed to take public salt-grit for clearing your private back yard.  Personally, I buy a bag of salt from those fellows by Esher Station bridge and keep it in the back garden against the eventual snow, using it both on my paths and on the public frontage outside my house.



Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Ratty on January 23, 2013, 01:11:06 PM
Thanks, good to know. Basingfield Rd is still pretty treacherous, especially up by the school entrance. 


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Keith on January 23, 2013, 02:42:28 PM
Yes, very few residents of Basingfield Road cleared their frontages, although it is a well-used through route for pedestrians to/from school/doctors/station.  

Word down the grapevine is that a pedestrian fell and broke a leg on Ashley Road - another spot that was nearly all left uncleared and became packed down and treacherous.  

We'll have to do some coaxing to see whether citizens in those roads can be brought into the Snowman spirit...


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 23, 2013, 05:13:14 PM
If you have tried to clear snow away and someone falls where you have tried to clear are you liable for inevitable claims?


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Juninho on January 23, 2013, 05:47:03 PM
;D

I shouldn't laugh because I can see this happening one day...!

Isn't it the case in Germany - where you are legally obliged to keep your path clear??




Quote from: mg on January 23, 2013, 05:13:14 PM
If you have tried to clear snow away and someone falls where you have tried to clear are you liable for inevitable claims?


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 23, 2013, 06:20:50 PM
It does sound funny - but it always concerns me.  Just wondered what the legal aspects were.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Admin on January 23, 2013, 08:52:15 PM
Quote from: mg on January 23, 2013, 06:20:50 PM
It does sound funny - but it always concerns me.  Just wondered what the legal aspects were.

Covered in the Association's leaflet (http://residents-association.com/pdfs/snow_clearance_leaflet.pdf) (cited again on the home page) and in the a/m link to Surrey's FAQs.  From which  I quote:
"Can I clear ice and snow from pavementsand paths without fear of legal action?

You can help to make winter easier for everyone by clearing the ice and snow from pavements, around your business premises and outside yours or your neighbour's home if they need help. However, there are some important tips to bear in mind before you do this:

    Do not use hot water: this will melt the snow, but will replace it with black ice, increasing the risk of injury.
    Shovelling snow: use a shovel with the widest blade available, make a line down the middle of your path first, so you have a safe surface to walk on. Then you can simply shovel the snow from the centre to the sides.
    Be careful not to create an obstruction that may cause a risk of injury: make sure that the mound of snow that remains after shovelling is placed at the side of the road and not on it. However, don't pile it too high or road users may not be able to see over it and accidents may happen.
    Use salt: spread some ordinary table salt on the area you have cleared to prevent any ice forming. Ordinary salt works well and can be purchased cheaply from any local shop, but avoid spreading on plants or grass.
    Use the sun to your advantage: simply removing the top layer of snow will allow the sun to melt any ice beneath, however you will need to cover any ice with salt to stop refreezing overnight.

Clearing snow in this way can be carried out without fear of legal action so long as no hazards are created which might cause damage or injury to other road users."


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 24, 2013, 04:52:19 PM
Do these facts cover liability for private front drives etc.  I don't even touch the snow on my front drive because if someone slipped and it was on untouched snow I always think it would be classed as an "act of God" insurance wise but if I have tried to clear it and someone slipped it would be "an act of Me" so to speak.  I would love to know the legal situation because I would like to at least clear a path for the post lady.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 25, 2013, 01:40:53 PM
Hi - just wondered if anyone could answer my question.  It seems like we are going to have more snow today and I would like to know my legal position.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Admin on January 25, 2013, 01:49:20 PM
Unless we have a lawyer in the house who can expand, the best on the legal position is the official statement of SCC above.

I might point out that on your own property, where you are liable as householder, someone who slips and falls because you have failed to clear a safe path through packed icy snow is just as likely to sue as someone who slips and falls on a part you have rendered dangerous by e.g. pouring boiling water on it (against recommendations).

The message from Surrey is that if you clear a path responsibly you should have no fear of legal action.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 25, 2013, 04:18:25 PM
Come on lawyers - Thames Ditton must have a few!  I would love to know what is the legal position.  I think the snow due for today is supposed to be washed away quickly by loads of rain so maybe I won't be faced with should I or should I not clear the snow.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Keith on January 25, 2013, 04:22:21 PM
As far as lawyers go, you're damned if you do and damned if you don't!  They do not need to have the courage of their convictions.......all they need is that you acquit their invoice.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: Juninho on January 25, 2013, 05:12:50 PM
Well I say -> clear the snow because its safer for you, yuor friends and your family - and don't worry about the legal position!

If you are worried about being sued by your friends / visitors if they slip on your driveway - then you have some harsh friends!! Just make sure they don't get up... !

;)

I for one would never even dream of suing if I slipped on someones driveway...  regardless of whether they had or had not cleared the snow!!


Quote from: mg on January 25, 2013, 04:18:25 PM
Come on lawyers - Thames Ditton must have a few!  I would love to know what is the legal position.  I think the snow due for today is supposed to be washed away quickly by loads of rain so maybe I won't be faced with should I or should I not clear the snow.


Title: Re: Snow Shovelling
Post by: mg on January 25, 2013, 07:14:08 PM
I'm sure friends and family wouldn't (????!!!!!)  but I'm thinking other visitors - post people, delivery people, etc.  might.


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