The price of potholes in the UK

Posted on: March 29, 2017

Winter weather damage
With the weather improving in many parts of the UK, it’s only now that we can start to assess the damage that the winter weather has done to our roads and premises. 

The creation of potholes is perhaps one of the most damaging by-products of the snow, ice and rain.

Potholes are created by a number of factors. Severe temperature changes open cracks in the road surfaces. This is then exacerbated by either rain that falls and fills the cracks or moisture that then freezes, expands and opens up the cracks further.

Paying the price of potholes
70% of councils define a pothole as being a 40mm-deep cavity in the road. They can shred tyres and crack wheels. It’s estimated that potholes cause as many as 1 in 10 mechanical failures on UK roads and cost motorists in the region of £730 million every year on car repairs. 
In a 2016 survey, 39% of the AA’s members claimed their cars had been damaged by potholes. Of this number, 28% said a wheel, its tyre

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Spencer Matthews King of the Snow Hill

Posted on: March 15, 2017

Conqueror of the Austrian ice and snow
Congratulations to Spencer Matthews for proving that, when it comes to winter sports, the British are as game as any other nation. If you don’t quite recognise the name, he is one of the stars of Made in Chelsea who this week proved he had what it takes to win Channel 4’s The Jump title.

So-called celebrities have had to compete over the last few weeks in a variety of winter sports where their common enemy was the snow and ice of Innsbruck in Austria. Ski-ing, the skeleton bob, snow cross, ski aerobatics, ski cross and the infamous ski-jump were amongst the disciplines the competitors had to face.

Ski-jump record for Matthews
Matthews upset the odds and soared past Olympic gymnast Louis Smith with the last ski jump of the series landing at 18.98m, beating Smith by 93cm and also breaking The Jump’s all-time record that was previously held by actor Sid Owen, who played ‘Ricky in EastEnders.

Whilst impressive for a novice ski jumper Matth

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Ice phenomena - Pancake ice and flammable ice bubbles

Posted on: March 7, 2017

Whilst ice on the roads and pavements can be a real danger if not gritted professionally, occasionally ice, in its most natural state, can be a beauty to behold. Like these two ice phenomena.

Ice pancakes
These can be found in rivers and the open sea. They form when foam floating on a river freezes. These frozen chunks are then shaped by being rubbed against one another in eddies of water to form beautiful pancake shapes fit for Shrove Tuesday. They are often spotted on Scottish rivers.

Flammable ice bubbles
Beautiful on the outside but hazardous on the inside, these frozen bubbles are really frozen pockets of methane, a highly flammable gas, that can explode at any given time. Often found on Alberta’s Lake Abraham in the US, they occur where dead leaves or animals fall into the water. Bacteria attacks them and ejects the methane in the form of bubbles which then freeze when they comes into contact with the frozen water. 

Book your winter gritting
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