Sheffield residents death fears over grit bins

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Worried residents fear it will ‘take a fatality’ on their Sheffield street to get a grit bin back after a spate of icy crashes.

The bin at the junction of Ansell Road and Falkland Road, High Storrs, has been used by householders to treat their steep curving road and pavements for years.

Residents on Falkland Road in Sheffield are concerned about the state of the icy road after several accidents in recent days.

Residents on Falkland Road in Sheffield are concerned about the state of the icy road after several accidents in recent days.

However, it has now been moved further up Ansell Road as part of Sheffield Council’s controversial winter review, and is 196m away.

The council says there are two other grit bins under 120 metres away but residents, who have had to put socks over their shoes just to cross the road, say they are too treacherous to reach easily.

Three vehicles lost control at the bend of Falkland Road and smashed into homes and cars in a single night of ‘carnage’, but residents have now been told grit bin locations will not be reviewed until the summer.

It comes after a car knocked down a wall in a separate ice-related collision this week and temperatures plunge again.

Dad John Blake, of Falkland Road, said: “I want to know if it is going to take a fatality until something changes. If anybody had been stood there during a crash, they could have been killed.

“If the grit bin we used hadn’t been taken away, we would have gritted the corner, still have our car and now they are not reviewing the grit bins until May – this is ludicrous.

“It’s dangerous to try to get to other grit bins when it is icy.”

The three crashes on December 12 – on the icy weekend which eventually led to the council’s reversal of cuts to gritting routes – saw a Ford mount the kerb and smash into Mr Blake’s car, pushing it into his garage,

A 15-tonne recovery vehicle sent out to recover the Ford then skidded and demolished a neighbour’s garden wall, almost sliding into their living room.

As the driver pulled the truck out, a black cab smashed into it at the rear.

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Mr Blake said a small gritting vehicle attended after several requests, but slid back down the street, before a motorway gritter attended and treated the street.

Technician Mr Blake, aged 59, said: “Had the grit bin been present at the bottom of Ansell Road I could have prevented the carnage.”

He has now requested that one of two grit bins on High Storrs Drive is moved to serve the corner.

Figures revealed by Walkley resident Stan Fichele last week showed that just £10,000 was saved from removing 121 grit bins, while police requested gritters 21 times on the weekend of December 12-13.

Pat Hague, of Shirecliffe tenants and residents’ association, said residents in her area were also struggling to get to main streets from Musgrave Road after its grit bin was removed.

The council said the grit bin had been moved further up Ansell Road to ‘ensure residents have the provision they need’.

Coun Jayne Dunn, cabinet member for environment, said: “We very much appreciate the work Mr Blake has been doing in gritting his road and would recommend he uses the grit bin on High Storrs Road, which is closer to his property than the previous one he used.

“The grit bin Mr Blake is referring to was 52 metres away from his property. But there are now two grit bins in his immediate area – one on High Storrs Drive, which is 48 metres away, and another in Mylor Road, 120 metres away. “There is also another grit bin nearby, outside the doctors’ surgery on Falkland Road.”

To report empty grit bins call 0114 273 4567 or visit Sheffield city Council