Shropshire Council

Advice for clearing snow and ice from footways

  • Do work from the footway at all times and towards oncoming traffic wherever possible
  • Do place the snow on the verge or grassed areas
  • Do place snow at edges of footways next to the road, this helps to form a safety barrier between cars and pedestrians
  • Do put sand or ash down on cleared areas as it will provide grip
  • Do use grit/salt from grit bins sparingly
  • Do not obstruct accesses or footpaths with the snow
  • Do not use grit/salt from highway grit bins on private property – that is theft
  • Do not use a lot of salt – a teaspoon of salt per square metre will defrost ice patches
  • Do not lift too much snow at one time. Compacted snow can be very heavy
  • Do not use hot water to melt ice or snow – it may refreeze to form “black ice”
  • Do not work in blizzard conditions

When working outside

  • Wrap up warm
  • Wear suitable footwear
  • Do not work in the dark
  • Beware of hypothermia and wind chill effects
  • Wear light coloured clothing and a reflective coat if available.

The law on clearing snow and ice

There is no law stopping you from clearing snow and ice on the footway outside your property, pathways to your property or public spaces. This includes both public roads and footways.

If an accident did occur, it’s highly unlikely that you would be sued as long as you:

  • Are careful
  • Use common sense to make sure that you do not make the footway or pathway clearly more dangerous than before

People using areas affected by snow and ice also have responsibility to be careful themselves.