The Local Government Association’s (LGA) annual weather resilience survey found that on average local areas had eight gritting lorries as well as quad bikes, tractors and snow blowers ready for difficult conditions.

The survey of 38 councils found that 95% have the same amount of salt stockpiled as they did for last winter (1.4 million tonnes), with over half of councils also sharing their salt stocks with neighbouring authorities.

The poll revealed a lack of HGV drivers this winter, with 63% of councils finding it difficult to recruit and retain drivers. It also found that the cost of salt has increased by 10% due to the impact of inflation.

Nearly eight in 10 councils were using GPS systems to speed up the deployment of salt on roads, with two thirds equipping street cleaners with salt to spread on pavements.

Cllr David Renard, LGA Transport spokesperson, said: ‘As temperatures start to plummet, councils are ready to work around the clock to grit roads and pavements to make sure that people are kept safe and local communities can get out and about.

‘Councils have stockpiled millions of tonnes of salt and are using new and innovative technologies where they can to ensure those areas that are most treacherous are kept clear and safe for use.

‘During these cold spells, it is the elderly or those who have a respiratory disease who are more at risk of ill health and in need of more support. As some people may choose to limit their heating use due to the impact of rising energy bills, it is all the more important that people check up on those that may need more help. It could help save lives.’