Measures to help residents in Cheshire East cope with the prolonged cold weather
Warm PlaCEs are places where people can come together to stay warm, perhaps enjoy a cuppa or a bowl of soup.
Warm PlaCEs in Cheshire East include many libraries, leisure centres, community centres, churches etc across the borough.
Working with partners, CEC is also providing a range of free winter wellbeing items to those who may need extra support. This includes warm clothing, hand warmers, duvets, hot water bottles and energy saving products.
CEC also continue to provide essential food and fuel vouchers through Emergency Assistance, the Household Support Scheme and Home Improvement Grants.
To find out more about Warm PlaCEs near you, visit – Warm places – keeping Cheshire East warm
Frozen pipes at home
If you are experiencing no water or reduced pressure in your home, it could be due to a frozen pipe.
The United Utilities website has lots of advice about how to identify if you have frozen pipes, and what to do to avoid this in the future.
The Severe Weather Emergency Protocol (SWEP) was triggered on Monday of last week and will run through until Sunday given the forecast; this means that anyone sleeping rough will be provided with accommodation for that period. The voluntary organisations have been informed.
Gritting and winter highways maintenance
During this extended cold period, the demand on the Highway Service including the number of enquiries related to the CEC winter operations, greatly increase and puts a lot of pressure on their teams.
CEC gritting operations includes an interactive map to view gritting routes. Cheshire East Council has pre-set gritting routes which are treated when icy conditions are forecast, gritting only the roads on these routes. The website also provides information for the gritting of footpaths, town centre areas, and grit bin requests, including how requests can be made to re-stock.
CEC is continually monitoring the weather forecast which is used to agree their winter daily operations to ensure that the network is kept in a safe condition.
As CEC is now treating the roads with salt to prevent freezing, this increases the potential for potholes to form through the freeze and thaw effect. Report any defects via Report a pothole or other road issue (cheshireeast.gov.uk) so they can be effectively managed given the additional pressures on the teams.
It may take a little longer than normal to respond to reports given the increased number of enquiries received during this period. Repairs will also take longer to repair and will be arranged on a safety related priority basis.
To report any issues that present an immediate danger, please report these via the CEC Contact Centre on 0300 123 5020 during working hours or out of working hours on 0300 123 5025, so they can be allocated to the team for immediate attention. This includes any rural communities who need their grit boxes topped up. Please do not contact highway officers directly, as they may not be able to respond in a timely manner.
Winter health guidance
Winter bugs are everywhere and lower immunity levels this year means that some people such as those with underlying health conditions, the elderly and young children are more vulnerable to catching them than others.
It’s more important than ever to act to protect ourselves and others from becoming ill.
This is as simple as washing your hands regularly with soap and water or using hand sanitiser and staying at home if you’re unwell.
If you are eligible, get the Covid-19 booster and flu jabs.
The seasonal booster is safe, effective and the best way to prevent serious illness from Covid-19.
The booster dose appointments of the Covid-19 vaccine can be booked on the NHS National Booking Service website or by calling 119.
You can also get a Covid-19 vaccine without an appointment by searching for a NHS local walk-in vaccination clinic online.
Cheshire East Council has recently launched a new public health ‘Winter Bugs’ campaign to alert people to the risks and the simple measures they can take to reduce the risks of infection to themselves, and to those around them.
UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) weather alert
Further to the cold weather alert issued on 9 December, the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) is continuing to encourage people to stay warm and look out for those most at risk as freezing conditions persist across the country.
The Met Office is warning that all regions of England will continue to experience cold weather from 9am on Wednesday 14 December to midday on Sunday 18 December.
Dr Agostinho Sousa, Head of Extreme Events and Health Protection at UKHSA, said:
As this period of cold weather persists throughout the rest of the week, it is important to check in on the wellbeing of those most vulnerable to the cold, including those over the age of 65 and those with pre-existing medical conditions.
Try to heat the rooms you use the most to at least 18°C if you can and keep your bedroom window shut at night.