WITH temperatures set to drop, preparations for winter are well underway in County Durham.

Durham County Council is preparing to keep the region moving this winter with a 76 strong fleet of gritters and snowblowers set for the colder weather.

There are 42,000 tonnes of salt ready to tackle the ice and any snow, with over 2,380 salt bins located in key positions around the county to assist residents and businesses.

During normal winter conditions 1,700km of priority one roads, normally A or B roads, will be treated, covering 45 per cent of the road network.

More minor routes, or priority two roads, will be treated in times of prolonged severe winter weather when the resources are available.

Mark Readman, Durham County Council’s highways services manager, said: "With the weather now turning cold, it's important that we are ready for icy conditions. Preparations for colder weather have been underway for some time, but our winter maintenance programme is now fully up and running."