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Beat the ice; how to keep business moving during extreme weather events

De-icers and Anti-icers

Extreme weather in the UK is becoming more and more commonplace. It’s icy effect on business and the economy is now a real cause for concern. Every winter we are seeing more extreme weather events, leading to disruption and delays across the rail, freight, road and aviation.

If your business depends on logistics and transport you need to do more than wait for the snow to fall before joining the hordes panic buying rock salt and deicer. You need a solid winterisation strategy and a good partnership with suppliers who have the products and expertise to keep your team on the move.

In this blog we take a look at some of the best strategies employed by some of our leading customers; from London Underground to the some of the world’s leading air operators. So don’t get caught out in the cold. Follow our extreme weather survival guide for businesses and keep those wheels turning!

Winter’s cost to the UK economy

When these extreme weathers conditions hit we like to protest about how inconvenient it is. The whole country seems to grind to a halt. But there’s a more serious economic impact to talk about. If the roads aren’t properly maintained, or the trains stop working, then a number of logistical nightmares begin to crop up for a variety of sectors.

For example, the entire construction industry stops dead in its tracks. Materials can’t be delivered, RMC trucks can’t get to the construction site, the workers can’t get anything done.

For airports the problems are also very severe. Without proper preparation a flurry of ice and snow could ground planes for days.

‘Gridlocked motorways, empty restaurants and idle diggers seen across Britain’ at the beginning of 2018, ‘cost the economy at least £1bn a day,’ the Guardian says. ‘The extreme weather had the biggest impact on the construction industry, which experts said lost neraly £2bn over the three worst days, as sub-zero temperatures forced building workers to down tools.’

Winter Preparation in the workplace

The problem a lot of businesses face is that they aren’t ready. The weather in Britain is, at the best of times, unpredictable. So, we cross our fingers and simply hope that everything is fine. Hope that temperatures don’t drop below zero, that the ground isn’t covered in snow and ice. And if it does hit, hope that it passes quickly.

However, when the weather hits, it’s likely already too late to do anything about it. Having a good plan in place and preparations made just incase can minimise the damage to your business.

Instead of waiting until it’s too late, it’s time to get proactive and prepare for the worst (all whilst hoping for the best of course).

Be like an airforce

Let’s look at the how an organisation like the airforce prepares for winter. Every air force base needs to be ready in case it’s hit by anything from drought, to flooding, snow and ice to scorching desert heat.

How then do they deal with the extremes within which they operate? Preparation. Buying ahead. They plan for almost every eventual scenario. This means buying a stockpile of appropriate chemicals months in advance and making precise reactionary plans ready for any eventuality.

If they are caught short of deicers for runways for example, or antifreeze coolant for their engines it could mean life or death.

CHELA with London Transport

When it comes to keeping the London infrastructure running great preparation is essential. Having enough chemicals to keep roads and railway lines clear and usable is hugely important. Everyday tens of millions of people use the tube and millions more the roads to have these shut down even for a day has a huge economic impact for a number of key industries.

Which is why we have recently partnered with the London Underground to help optimise the underground network through the increasingly cold and intense winters we’ve been experiencing.

It’s not just about keeping the infrastructure running though. It’s important to consider how harmful the chemicals used are, both to the surfaces they come in contact with as well as the environment.

For example, a lot of traditional deicing salts are corrosive or pollutant. Read about how we have helped keep iconic london landmarks open during the winter months.

Winterisation Products for roads runways, railways and helipads.

CHELA® TRACKCLEAR 276
Propelyene Glycol De-Ice for Track and Points
An effective and efficient liquid which can be used for de-icing in metros urban and national rail systems both underground and overground. Based on propylene glycol it is thickened and inhibited for safer more efficient action. Works well in severe conditions. Low conductivity means it can be used on the third rail and switches and points. Low foaming and low residue makes it easy and convenient to use. As well as de-icing it helps prevent re-icing.

ICEBLAST PLUS 446
DE-Ice and Anti-Ice Fluid
An aqueous solution of potassium acetate that is an efficient anti-ice as well as quickly melting ice and snow. IceBlast Plus works down to -37°C (salt works down to -7°C) It conforms to AMS 1435A aerospace material specification for fluid de-icers for use in airports on runways and aprons and stations, on bridges, car parks, pavement, roads and other public areas.


If you’re looking for further advice on working with safe, efficient and environmentally friendly Winterisation products, get in touch. We will be happy to discuss your requirements.

To find out more about us you can read some of our cleaning case studies and discover why we are one of the UK’s leading suppliers of intelligent cleaning solutions for the most demanding applications in transport, construction and industry.