So the council have decided to withdraw winter gritting from many routes in Sheffield, giving withdrawal of Government funding as a reason.
It is undoubtedly true that Sheffield has been hard hit by the swingeing cuts imposed by Eric Pickles.
However, what the council are proposing is likely to result in many serious and possibly fatal accidents when there are icy conditions.
Several routes in the Crosspool, Lodge Moor, Stannington and Fulwood areas are affected by the proposals.
Some of these are vital routes from the south of the city, via western routes, to northern locations such as Hillsborough and Chapeltown, as well as the motorway network. Many of the routes are at higher levels and involve steep gradients – for example Stephen Hill/Hagg Hill, Lodge Lane, Rails Road, Hangingwater Road and Dore Road.
The western routes are used by significant numbers of commuters and others wishing to avoid the heavily congested city centre roads.
If such routes are not gritted it does not require much imagination to see the consequences of vehicles hitting black ice, having started to come down one of these steep hills.
The council should rethink these ill-conceived proposals and find other ways to make the savings imposed by the Government.