Seasonal winter

Tips on staying safe in winter and how to keep warm during cold weather; latest road gritting and snow clearing information in Suffolk and taking care outdoors.

Keep up to date with what's happening during winter

The winter season last from 1 October to 30 April.

You can follow us on Twitter @suff_highways for regular updates or read about gritting of roads in Suffolk.

Please note: You do not need an account to view the Twitter feed.

Other information

Who we work with

 

  • get vaccinate against seasonal flu - if eligible
  • check weather forecasts and take this into account when planning your day
  • check you have shoes with good grip, to prevent falls in cold weather
  • wear several layers of clothes to stay warm
  • remain active in your home and limit going outside unless it is necessary
  • good hand hygiene can help prevent spread of norovirus
  • check NHS Choices for health and guidance on winter ailments (flu, winter vomiting, cold temperatures)

More information is available from NHS choices

  • staying warm in your home is important
  • set your thermostat at around 18-21C and heat all rooms you use in the day
  • If you can't heat all your rooms, make sure you keep your main living room warm throughout the day and heat your bedroom before going to bed
  • In very cold weather, rather than turn the thermostat up, set the heating to come on earlier so you won't be cold while you wait for your home to heat up
  • Heave regular meals, including plenty of hot food and drinks, keeping your diet as varied as possible
  • During the night try to keep the temperature above 18C in your bedroom

More information is available from NHS: Very cold weather

 

  • check that pipes are adequately lagged and know where your stop tap is located
  • check that your heating is serviced and cooking appliances in your home are working correctly
  • check that you have ordered your winter heating fuel
  • find out if you are entitled to grants and subsidies for home heating insulation
  • check your smoke alarm. If you don't have one, get one for free by signing up to a home fire safety check
  • when using open fires, make sure you always use a fire guard to protect against flying sparks from hot embers
  • make sure embers are under control and properly put out before you go to bed
  • keep chimneys and flues clean and well maintained
  • keep heaters away from curtains and furniture, never use them for drying clothes and try to secure them against a wall to stop them falling over
  • unplug electric heaters and blankets when you go to bed
  • only use gas or paraffin heaters in well-ventilated areas. You could suffocate if the room is not properly aired
  • never use hot water bottles in the same bed as an electric blanket
  • don't leave electric blankets folded as this damages the internal wiring
  • electric blankets should be bought new and tested every 3 years. Replace your blanket when it is more than 10 years old
  • if you have to use candles or matches always secure them in a proper holder and away from materials that may catch fire - like curtains
  • put candles out completely using a snuffer or water before leaving the room or going to bed
  • discuss with family and neighbours how snow and ice might be cleared from in front of your house if you will be unable to do this yourself

 More information is available from The Met Office: Protecting your home

Keeping warm this winter

For advice on keeping warm and well this winter, call the Winter Warmth Advice Line free on 0800 085 7000, Monday to Friday 8am to 8pm, or textphone 0800 085 7857.

For more general information, see Age UK's "Spread the Warmth" campaign.

 

Icy roads and snow can often mean that older or more vulnerable people are not able to get out and about.

If you have an elderly, vulnerable neighbour or relative please look out for them in the winter months. They may need help with shopping, clearing paths, walking a dog or just to see a friendly face.

Specifically if the curtains aren't opened during the day, or there are no lights on in the evening, there may be something wrong. Try knocking on the door to see if there's an answer. If not, contact a relative or friend who you think may have a key.

Concerned about your welfare, or the welfare of someone else?

If you:

  • have concerns about somebody who you haven’t seen for a while and have not been able to contact them, please get in touch with your local police force on 101
  • have immediate concerns around your own health or welfare, or somebody else’s, please call 999
  • feel that yourself, or somebody you know, is struggling to maintain their personal care, then support may be available from social care services. Read more about contacting Customer First and social care

Clearing snow and ice from pavements

Anyone can clear snow and ice from the pavement outside their home or public spaces to prevent slips and falls.

Don't be put off clearing paths because your afraid someone will get injured. Remember, people walking on snow and ice have a responsibility to be careful themselves.

Find out more about Snow Code and snow clearing.

 

  • Winter weather can deteriorate fast, making driving hazardous. Suffolk Police advise motorists to:
  • check the weather forecast before setting off, if bad weather is forecast consider whether your journey is necessary
  • top up anti-freeze and screen wash and check for wear and tear on wiper blades
  • make sure your battery is fully charged
  • keep tyres at the recommended pressures and check you have at least 3 mm of tread
  • wipe dirt, spray of headlamps and make sure all bulbs are working
  • keep windows clear of snow, frost and condensation before setting off on a journey
  • clear snow from the top of the car
  • keep the fuel tank topped up and make sure you have enough fuel for your journey
  • allow extra time for your journey and drive at a sensible speed
  • take a fully charged mobile phone with you and carry a mobile charger and some emergency kit in the car, including a map, jump leads for the car battery, torch, warning triangle, ice scraper, de-icer, first-aid kit and warm clothes
  • in severe weather or for a long trip you may want to add a shovel, a pair of boots, a blanket, any medication, food and a hot drink

Find more information at: