drivers themselves could sprinkle sand and salt on dangerous sections of the road

drivers themselves could sprinkle sand and salt on dangerous sections of the road
drivers themselves could sprinkle sand and salt on dangerous sections of the road

– I live in a community of gardens near Antakalnis. We belong to the Vilnius municipality, but I have never seen a “Grinda” cleaner passing by in our gardens. Why?

– Vilnius residents are used to thinking that “Grinda” is responsible for the maintenance of all roads used for movement and communication, but this is not the case. Vilnius city municipality owns 2000 streets. Municipal company “Grinda” maintains 1251 km. Other streets and roads must be maintained by someone else. In each case, it is necessary to assess who should do it. In some places, the Lithuanian Highway Directorate takes care of street cleaning, in other places gardeners’ associations, real estate developers or other legal or natural persons.

– Just like last winter, this time it was extremely slippery going down from the parking lot of the shopping center “Akropolis” to Ozo street. Why is this short stretch of road so neglected?

– Here I will add to the answer I gave earlier that “Grinda” takes care of, let’s put it simply, the main streets of the city. Our equipment does not clean apartment yards, entrances to them or shopping center lots – these are private plots, the maintenance of which must be taken care of by the specific property owner. So, in answer to the reader’s question, maintenance of the parking lot of the said mall is the concern of the mall.

By the way, we also took care of a free mixture of sand and salt, which is placed in special containers on 120 city streets. If drivers see that a certain section of the road is extremely slippery, we invite you to be responsible and sprinkle the dangerous section of the road with the mixture to keep traffic as safe as possible until our special street cleaning equipment arrives.

– I don’t understand why in the same city some streets were decently cleaned, while in others traffic almost stopped because they were not cleaned.

– Vilnius street maintenance procedure is divided into five levels. Again, I will say it simply – priority is given to the streets with the most intensive traffic, those on which public transport moves. This is the first level of street maintenance. There are 104 such streets in Vilnius. They must be cleaned and sprinkled with salt 3 hours after snowfall. Here are some such streets: Kareivius, Oslo, Ozo, Savanorių prospekt, Gariūņu street, etc. There are 280 streets at the second street maintenance level. According to the agreement with the municipality, Grinda’s technicians must clean them within 4 hours.

These are Dunojaus, Geležinkelis streets, Liepkalnos street, Šeimyniškių, Vilkpėdė, Lukšios, Mindaugas, Naugarduks, etc.

I would like to point out that the streets of the first and second level of care are cleaned and sprinkled with salt only, the streets of the third, fourth and fifth levels of care are cleaned and sprinkled with a mixture of salt and sand, but the streets of the third level (196 streets) must be cleaned within 5 hours. streets of the fourth level (180 streets) must be cleaned within 8 hours, streets of the lowest, fifth level (947 streets) after a heavy snowfall, when more than 10 cm of snow fall, must be cleaned within 48 hours. You can check the street maintenance level of the street where your house is located on the “Grindas” page. There are also the exact locations of the sand and salt containers.

– I keep seeing the buzzing of snow removal machines on Eigulių street during snowfall. Wouldn’t it be easier to distribute them around Vilnius?

– Your reader is right – the largest part of the equipment is based in the central base of “Grinda” on Eigulių street, but there are what we call support stations in the city – in Justiniškės, Nauja Vilnia, Vaidotės, Užupy, Pilaite, near the Green Lakes. Crews are on duty there to respond to changes in traffic conditions. Just like last year, we will soon build special towers for sand and salt mixtures in the city, where our employees will be able to fill up the tanks of special equipment and continue their work without returning to our central station.

However, our small street maintenance machines take the mixture from them for sprinkling the streets, which mainly work in parts of the city where large machinery does not pass – i.e. Užupis, Senamiestis. Thus, it is not the case that the equipment travels tens of kilometers, for example, from Balsiai to Eigulių street to fill up its tanks.

– When I drive myself, I use one of the navigation apps, which can mark slippery sections of the road. It helps a lot. How does “Grinda” find out about slippery road bumps?

– Often, responsible drivers simply call us on the short number 1355 to report particularly slippery road sections, but we maintain the closest connections with Vilnius public transport. Since public transport drivers are among the first to hit the streets, they are extremely quick to share information about places that may become more difficult to pass.

– Wouldn’t it be a solution to close certain sections of the streets so that the road is cleaned and then the traffic can resume again?

– I don’t think this is a solution, because our task is to keep the city going. I understand the reader’s point that the road surface would be cleaned and sprinkled after a traffic stop, but if the snow is heavy, it will not help. We follow the tactic of performing so-called preventive spraying when assessing forecasters’ forecasts so that the road surface does not become slippery.

Unfortunately, as far as Friday was concerned, the weather forecast was not accurate and the heavy snowfall that we reported was not expected. I would perhaps ask the drivers, seeing that it has started to snow heavily and there is no great need to drive, to slow down a bit so that our equipment can move more freely on the streets. Just understand that the Grinda technique has no preference. If you are stuck in traffic, our equipment is also stuck in traffic, you might even see it in your rear view mirror.

– Airport runways are always cleaned. Why can’t it be like that on city streets?

– First of all, it is the intensity of traffic. Let’s take a look at the major European airports, when it starts to snow very intensively, they also stop flights – planes don’t take off or land because they can’t clear the snow from the runways. In addition, we use a less aggressive salt mixture on the streets to minimize damage to car bodies and suspensions. Also for asphalt and the environment.

– Slopes in Vilnius are always difficult to climb. Shouldn’t we pay more attention to them?

– Seeing the forecasters’ forecasts and from our many years of experience in maintaining the streets of the capital, we ourselves know which slopes in the capital require more attention, that is why, for example, a snowplow-spreader is on duty on Pamėnkalnis Street in order to clear Mount Tauros as quickly as possible. The situation is the same with the Narbutos and Šeškinės mountains.

By the way, when talking about places where drivers should be extremely careful, I would single out bridges and overpasses, because they get cold the fastest, so when it snows and the snow presses on the car wheels, a slippery road can very quickly form. We pay extra attention to overpasses and bridges, but drivers should be extra careful when driving over them, even if the surface did not seem slippery when driving on the street before.

The article is in Lithuanian

Tags: drivers sprinkle sand salt dangerous sections road

NEXT The Constitutional Court takes up the dispute between the shareholders of “Lietkabelis”.