Don’t get caught out by cold

Cold weather is on the way
Cold weather is on the way

Winter is well on the way and residents are being warned to start thinking about how to stay safe while out and about in cold weather.

East Dunbartonshire Council has joined forces with the Scottish Government in a national campaign to keep residents as safe as possible throughout the winter months.

Experts tell us before setting off we should check weather forecasts, tell someone where we are going and make sure our mobile phones are fully charged.

For those who drive, there are some specific tips about staying one step ahead of the weather.

Prepare your vehicle and make sure your car is ready for winter by carrying out some basic checks including the anti-freeze and oil levels, wiper blades, tyre treads and the condition of brakes.

You should also ensure that all your lights are working, and that your car has plenty of windscreen wash to the right winter concentration.

If in doubt take your car to a garage to get a full winter check-up.

It’s also worth kitting out your car with a few items in case of emergency - including a warm blanket, emergency food and drink, a torch, a shovel, de-icer and scraper, a tow rope and a mobile phone which is kept fully charged.

Council leader Rhondda Geekie, convenor of policy and resources at East Dunbartonshire Council, said: “Packing these basic but essential items could literally save your life if you get caught out by bad weather.

“As a council we are doing our bit – we have over 400 grit bins throughout East Dunbartonshire and residents are welcome to collect their own supplies from the Broomhill depot. Please bring your own shovel and container.

“You can also follow our daily forecast on our website, which will also say if we plan to send out our gritters that night. All of this information will help you plan your journeys better and stay safe on the roads.”

She added: “Whether you travel by car, bike, public transport or on foot, you need to be prepared for bad weather.

“It is only five years since people were stranded all over Scotland by heavy snow and plummeting temperatures – some even spent the night in their cars.

“We obviously hope we don’t have such a severe winter this year, but we just don’t know, so we should take time to think about the journeys we make.”

The ‘Ready for Winter’ campaign is a national initiative led by the Scottish Government, supported locally by partner organisations across Scotland.

Its aim is to ensure that Scotland is better prepared for severe or prolonged winter weather this year, by providing information and advice for individuals, businesses and communities.