Grit and bear it!

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COUNCIL chiefs have admitted pedestrian safety is being jeopardised because authority barriers stop gritters from getting down one of Wigan’s busiest roads.

Measures taken to restrict traffic through King Street – which is a haven for thousands of revellers on Friday and Saturday night – have a potentially perilous side-effect, it emerged this week.

And even if the barriers were open, the lorries could not get down the thoroughfare at peak evening times because it is pedestrianised for club-goers, and their safety might be endangered.

With continuing freezing conditions, fears are growing that accidents are waiting to happen.

Clubbers first complained last weekend, after discovering that pavements and the road were dangerously slippery. Numerous folk suffered falls.

Sam Robinson, 20, of Standish Lower Ground, said: “It was an absolute treacherous place and a death zone. I saw two girls hit the deck just walking up it.

“It didn’t look completely frozen, but it was like a glaze over surface. It was extremely dangerous – the alcohol doesn’t help as well, I suppose.”

Ryan Kemp, manager of Elements nightclub, added: “Just from standing outside myself for a period of time, I saw eight people slip over.

“The state of the road is poor at the moment. People were slipping and stumbling everywhere, as it was so dangerous.”

Areas surrounding Wigan Wallgate station were also difficult underfoot, as clubbers struggled to move between bars.

Wigan gritting manager Mark McCartney said: “Clearly, with King Street closed by barriers and potentially thousands of people on the street at weekends, we cannot safely grit the road.

“We are reviewing the King Street situation and will provide a pre-grit when we are alerted to poor weather, before the street is closed to vehicles in the evenings.”