Cardiff Council has a new vehicle operating in its winter maintenance fleet this year.
The Multihog vehicle sprays a brine solution across the city's segregated cycleways and is being used during the current cold weather to ensure cycleways in the city are safe for cyclists to use without the serious risk of accidents.
The de-icing sprayer is top-mounted on the rear of the Multihog tractor, and is ideal for distributing de-icing fluids. It has no overhanging booms and doesn’t extend the length of the tractor – spraying is achieved through a combination of 3 spray sections and powerful side nozzles which give a total spray width of 10 metres/33 ft. Spraying is CAN bus controlled for efficient use of de-icing fluid (spraying stops when the vehicle stops), with a safe low level filling point and tank cut out switch to prevent overfilling
A cycleway in Cardiff City Centre - Credit: Western Mail
Councillor Dan De'Ath, Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning and Transport at Cardiff Council said: "The new vehicle, funded by Welsh Government, is custom built to carry out a range of different functions including salting and clearing snow from segregated cycleways. Cycleways that aren't segregated can be gritted using a traditional gritting machine, but due to the kerbs on the segregated cycleways, this isn't possible. "If a cyclist comes across this machine working its round, we ask that they remain a safe distance behind the vehicle or stop and dismount from the bike until the vehicle has passed by."
The Council have given out advise for cyclists in the cold winter weather, saying: "Cycling in the winter weather can be very challenging in adverse weather conditions and in some cases too dangerous to ride. Please plan your journey in advance and check the weather forecast to see if it is safe to ride your bike. As with driving a car, please make sure you check your bike for any faults before taking off on your journey."
A road being sprayed with brine spray - Credit: eu.argusleader.com
The brine spray being used is more effective that gritting with salt. Brine is strong salt/water solution and is corrosive by nature. The best way of looking after your bike is to give it a rinse down with water once you get home after cycling in cold weather.