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Warning of Black Ice on Orkney’s Roads

Orkney Islands Council is advising that road conditions will be hazardous over the next 48 hours, including a high risk of black ice. 

Road temperature forecasts suggest a risk of black ice between 02:00am tonight and 10:00am tomorrow(Thursday) morning, and then from as early as 3pm on Thursday and throughout the night. 

Temperatures are already falling and Council gritters have been treating roads since 3pm this afternoon.

Road temperatures are forecast to continually drop, hitting hazard levels from 9pm tonight (Wednesday) continuing through until at least 11am tomorrow (Thursday), and are likely to deteriorate again from early afternoon on Thursday.

With the first icy blast of the season, and the risk of black ice, the Council’s Roads team is reminding motorists to drive carefully:

  • Be aware of the heightened risk and drive to conditions – pay particular attention on bends, when turning, on downhill gradients and approaching junctions.
  • Provide additional time for your journey and drive slower.
  • Leave a bigger gap between you and the vehicle in front.
  • Before setting off, make sure your windscreen is clear and your windows are de-misted fully. Check your lights are not only working, but clean. Have warm clothes and a fully charged mobile phone.
  • Don’t leave your wipers on auto overnight, they may freeze to your windscreen and tear when you switch on your ignition.
  • Finally, remember to drive sensibly around gritters – don’t overtake, make sudden manoeuvres, or follow too closely.
  • Don’t assume the road is safe if a gritter has passed – salt takes time to work, and the gritter might be returning from a run.
  • Always pay attention to the road itself – bear in mind black ice can be notoriously hard to spot.

Further updates will be provided on the Council’s OIC Updates Facebook page facebook.com/OICUpdates/

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