Council move to get rough sleepers safe with temperatures set to plummet across Northamptonshire tonight
Gritters ready to roll out as forecasters predict MINUS SIX in early hours
Local authorites are poised to spring into action as temperatures tumble on Wednesday night (January 5).
West Northamptonshire Council activated its Severe Weather Emergency Protocol to get rough sleepers off the streets ahead of icy blast while Northamptonshire Highways gritters are set to hit the roads twice in the early hours of Thursday (January 6).
Northamptonshire is likely to escape the worst of the arctic weather over the next few days with Met Office snow warnings in force as far south as Derbyshire.
But local forecasters @NNweather predict temperatures dropping to minus 5°C or minus 6°C overnight — just days after overnight lows were registering in double figures.
The Severe Weather Emergency Protocol means anyone sleeping rough can be provided with somewhere safe, warm, and dry to stay.
It aims to ensure that no one dies on the streets due to severe weather.
Anyone known to be at risk of sleeping rough will be contacted and provided with details of how to access the emergency accommodation. Anyone not contacted can still call the homelessness team on 0300 126 7000.
The council says it will, barring exceptional circumstances, provide accommodation for individuals who are known to be rough sleeping in the district, with who we can make contact.
Northamptonshire Highways' fleet to 20 gritters are on stand-by every night from October to April looking after around 1,200 miles of the county's roads.
But a spokesman warned: "Salt needs vehicle movement to activate it and melt the ice or stop it forming. On quiet roads this takes longer, so please be careful out there."
National Highways is responsible for the major roads on the network, including the M1, A45, A5 and A6.