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Kent County Council should admit snow response was inadequate

Tim PraterFolkestone West County Councillor, Tim Prater, has put a question to Kent County Council: "Will the Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Waste confirm that Kent Police had contacted KCC them to get the roads treated and that the response by Kent Highways to the snowfall on 10th / 11th February in Folkestone and surrounding areas was totally inadequate, leading to even main roads being completely impassable, cars being abandoned and road accidents."

Lib Dem County Councillor for Folkestone West and Sandgate, Tim Prater, commented:

"As a Kent County Councillor, I contacted the Cabinet Member for Highways on Wednesday night, when it was clear that they had lost control of keeping even major routes open, and was also out pushing cars and turning cars around in Sandgate High Street by 8am on Thursday morning. Unlike Kent Highways.

"Perhaps if Kent County Council had not been wasting £600,000 over the past few years on the Kent TV project then there would have been more resources on the ground to deal with emergencies when they arise.

"Part of the issue is of co-ordination and working together: anyone in Folkestone could have told Kent Highways that there was a problem on Wednesday evening - and indeed at least I and Kent Police did. However, due to the way Kent Highways is organised, they, and their salt, is in Ashford. Fat lot of use there.

"It was only a few weeks ago that Kent Highways re-remembered that it is THEIR responsibility to clear pavements at all - when responsibility transferred to them, they sort of forgot: Nick Chard tried to force the blame onto districts, and was forced to backtrack.

"Overall, Kent Highways didn't get it right this time. Folkestone has seen a major snow fall, and despite the warning before and during, they failed to respond as strongly as they should. This is not to say individual crews didn't do as much as they could, but more crews should have been sent out, and been sent out earlier.

"The response was insufficient."