Sopsaltning av cykelvägar i teori och praktik: erfarenheter från utvärderingar i svenska kommuner

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To encourage people to cycle during winter and at the same time reduce the number of single bicycle crashes, a high winter maintenance service level is needed. Traditionally in Sweden, ploughing and gritting is used for winter maintenance of cycleways and footways. In recent years, a method using a front-mounted power broom for snow clearance and salt for de-icing (commonly called “sweepsalting”) has become popular for winter maintenance of cycleways in Swedish municipalities. Linköping was the first municipality to test the method, already in 1999. Today, municipalities from Umeå in the north to Malmö in the south are applying the method with a variation in methods, equipment and strategies. In this project earlier research has been complemented with detailed field studies in Linköping and Stockholm, theoretical knowledge as well as practical experiences from several Swedish municipalities. The objective has been to provide a better understanding regarding pros and cons of “sweep-salting” as well as the equipment, methods and strategies appropriate under various conditions. The studies presented in this report show that when working successfully, the sweep-salting method creates a bare surface with higher friction than traditional ploughing and gritting. Measures must be done in time and the operating speed adjusted according to the prevailing conditions. In mild weather brine is sufficient, but with lower temperatures and heavy snowfall larger amounts of salt is needed and pre-wetted or dry salt must be used. For the method to work properly, the bicycle path construction should be of good condition without cracks or other damages in the surface. The equipment for sweep-salting needs to be further developed for a higher efficiency.

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