One worker with a shovel could solve the long-running problem of water run-off turning to ice on a busy rural road, it is claimed.

Kirklees councillor Martyn Bolt said water running across Kirklees roads and turning to ice in wintry conditions posed a danger to traffic.

In one example, he said water running off fields above road level had left a steep, curved section of the A616 Sheffield Road between New Mill and Jackson Bridge covered in ice.

But he said the danger had been known for several years without anything being done to resolve it.

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“The problem of water run-off turning to ice at the A616 has been reported since 2007,” he said.

“A sign warning about ice has become faded with time because it has been there so long – but there is no evidence of Kirklees doing anything to solve the problem.

“If you are coming downhill and just touch your brakes you could skid and hit anything coming towards you.”

He said Kirklees highways had promised to send a gritter to treat the road following a phone call, but the solution lay in “grips” rather than gritting.

“Instead of sending someone out with a caution sign, the answer is ‘grips’ – small slits cut into the grass verge with a shovel at an angle away from the road so that the water will run off into the verge,” said Clr Bolt.

“It is a recognised technique used on rural roads across the country. It could be done by one man with a shovel in the space of an hour.”

Icy conditions on Bog Green Lane, Colnebridge.

The problem of ice was also highlighted at Bog Green Lane , Colnebridge, yesterday (Thursday) when water leaking from a faulty water pipe valve froze to create treacherous conditions for motorists.

Clr Bolt said Yorkshire Water contractors who were called out following the incident should have broken up the ice which had formed as a result of the burst to make it safer for road users.

He said he watched as workmen put out traffic cones, erected temporary traffic lights, dug a hole and drove away in a van with the digger.

But he said: “Really, they need to break up the ice and put grit down. I have rung Kirklees highways to take a look at it.”

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A spokesman for Yorkshire Water said: “Earlier today (Thursday) we completed the repair of a leaking valve underneath Bog Green Lane and intend to fully reopen the road tomorrow (Friday) and take down the temporary traffic lights.

“All that remains for us to do is to backfill the road as we did need to excavate in order gain access to the damaged valve.

“We apologise for the traffic disruption this incident caused and would advise people to take care on icy roads caused by the sub zero temperatures.”

Kirklees Council has so far not commented.