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Getting ready for the big chill

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big chillPEMBROKESHIRE County Council is gearing up for the cold winter months ahead.

The Council’s transportation team is preparing its winter road plan to cope with whatever the weather brings. Although last year’s winter weather was relatively mild, Council gritters were still in action for 65 days.

The year before was exceptionally severe with gritters out for over 100 days and maintenance staff working the whole of the festive season – including Christmas Day itself.

This year the Council has stockpiled 7,000 tonnes of salt/grit – with a further 1,000 tonnes in reserve – ready to use on the County’s busiest roads should temperatures take a dive.

Staff are on standby 24 hours a day seven days a week to enable them to respond to emergency situations at short notice.

“We are determined to keep the county moving whatever the weather,” said Councillor Rob Lewis, Cabinet Member for Transportation.

“We prepare as much as we can but at the end of the day it’s impossible to predict exactly what the winter weather will bring.

“We hope to have a mild winter, but if it is not to be, then we are ready for the worst.”

Over winter the Council subscribes to a dedicated weather forecasting service and is also able to monitor data from a number of weather stations in the region including three in Pembrokeshire and a further eight in neighbouring authorities.Sensors installed at these outstations store and relay vital information such as air and road surface temperatures as well as wind speed.

A dedicated winter maintenance duty officer is also in place – including out of hours and at weekends- to monitor and plan for bad weather and coordinate the council’s response to it.

A team of 39 trained drivers will be on standby ready to respond should conditions take a turn for the worse. At their disposal they have one rotary snow plough (snow blower), 16 straight ploughs, five purpose built gritters, 11 demountable gritters and two trailer spreaders – plus access to additional snow clearing equipment from private contractors if needed.

Should temperatures start to dip towards freezing they will cover 11 primary salting routes across the county as a precaution.

Once these main routes have been completed they will tackle a network of secondary routes.

“During periods of snow and low temperatures it is policy is to give priority to key routes – ie those with high levels of traffic flow and then treat secondary routes as quickly as resources allow,” said Councillor Lewis.

Pembrokeshire has 120km of Trunk Road and 2,459km of county roads in total and ensures that all trunk roads and all class 1 and more heavily used or strategic class 2 and 3 roads are covered- 594km in total.

One treatment of the County’s primary gritting network (approximately 600km) uses on average about 75 tonnes of grit/salt.

Information about any disruption to services – including snow and ice – can be found on the council’s website: www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/serviceclosures

People can also stay up to date during bad weather conditions by:-

• Registering for school and Cleddau Bridge closure alerts – www.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/alerts
• “Like” us on Facebook – www.facebook.com/pembrokeshirecountycouncil
• “Follow” us on Twitter www.twitter.com/pembrokeshire

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Health

Health board: COVID-19 vaccinations will be by appointment only from end of this month

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THE LOCAL health board has announced that from August 31, access to Mass Vaccination Centres (MVCs) in Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion and Pembrokeshire for COVID-19 vaccinations will be by appointment only in preparation for the start of the winter vaccine programme.

Anyone wishing to drop-in for their first or second dose during August is advised to check opening times on the day before travelling by visiting hduhb.nhs.wales/healthcare/covid-19-information/covid-19-vaccination-programme/mass-vaccination-centres or calling 0300 303 8322 as these are subject to change. If you still require a booster, please wait to be offered an appointment.

From 31 August 2022 onwards, please book an appointment by calling 0300 303 8322 or by emailing COVIDEnquiries.hdd@wales.nhs.uk

Bethan Lewis, Interim Assistant Director of Public Health at Hywel Dda University Health Board (UHB), said: “Throughout the vaccination programme we’ve aimed to make the vaccine easily accessible through a combination of drop-ins and appointments. This change will allow us to deliver the COVID-19 in partnership with primary care and minimise the risk of duplication or vaccine waste.

“If you are eligible for an autumn COVID-19 booster, please wait to be invited by either your GP or the health board. Everyone eligible will be offered an appointment by November.

“GP practices are also preparing to invite eligible patients for their seasonal flu vaccine and aim to offer an appointment to everyone eligible by December. Again, please do not contact your GP practice at this time, you will be invited when it is your turn.”

Scheduled drop-in sessions for children and young people who are home-educated or not in education to access childhood vaccinations routinely offered through school nursing teams will continue as advertised at selected MVCs.

The remaining drop-in sessions for children aged 5 to 17 years of age will be held between 12pm and 6pm in the following locations:

Aberystwyth MVC (Thomas Parry Library, Llanbadarn Campus, SY23 3AS) – Tuesday 30 August
Carmarthen MVC (Y Gamfa Wen, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, SA31 3EP) – Friday 2 September
Cwm Cou MVC (Ysgol Trewen, SA38 9PE) – Monday 22 August
Haverfordwest MVC (Pembrokeshire Archives, SA61 2PE) – Wednesday 31 August
Llanelli MVC (Dafen Industrial Estate, SA14 8QW) – Tuesday 23 August
These drop-in sessions are also open to any Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire or Ceredigion school attendees who may have missed their vaccinations.

If you are unable to attend one of these sessions and have any queries or wish for your child to receive their scheduled vaccines, please complete the form available here hduhb.nhs.wales/healthcare/services-and-teams/immunisation-and-vaccination/childhood-and-young-people-vaccinations/vaccine-access-for-home-schooled-children or call 0300 303 8322 to be contacted by a member of the health board’s immunisation nursing team.

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Police appeal for information after man ‘was slapped on the back of the head’

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POLICE in Pembroke Dock are appealing for information after an alleged assault.

A male was slapped to the back of his head outside Lloyds Bank on Monday, August 8, 2022 between 5pm and 5.15pm following an argument with another male.

If you have any information please contact the Police on 101, quoting reference DPP/3231/08/08/2022/02/C

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Gareth Mann from Milford Haven sentenced to seven years in prison for drug offences

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DRUG dealer Gareth James Mann, aged 46, from Bunkers Hill, Milford Haven has been sentenced to a total of 7 years in prison.

A Misuse of Drugs Act search warrant was executed at Manns’ home address on 17th March 2022, where he was found to have controlled drugs including Heroin, Cocaine, Cannabis, Morphine, Pregabalin, Buprenorphine and Diazepam with a combined street value of up to £3660. Cash totalling £3430 was also found in his possession.

He was arrested and later charged with possession with intent to supply Class A drugs and with possession of criminal property.

Garth Mann: Drugs worth £3660, and cash totalling £3430 was found in his possession.

Mann appeared at Llanelli Magistrates court on Friday, March 18 where he entered a not guilty plea. He was remanded in custody to appear at Swansea Crown Court.

Following a 6-day trial Mann was found guilty of all counts by a majority verdict on Monday 15th August 2022 and sentenced to a total of 7 years in custody.

DS Vinny Barrett said told The Herald: “Tackling the supply of illegal drugs is a priority for police in Pembrokeshire and the misery that illegal drugs bring to local communities will not be tolerated.

“We are taking a positive approach in targeting those that supply illegal drugs, and I would encourage anyone with information about the misuse of drugs to contact police.

“This information will be acted upon and will help us in preventing the supply of illegal drugs and the criminality that can be associated with them.”

To report suspicious behaviour in your community, visit https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, email 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or call 101.

If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908.

Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111, or visiting www.crimestoppers-uk.org.

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