Are your staff road ready for winter weather?

As part of recent blog posts we’ve highlighted the need to plan for business continuity over winter.  If any of your staff do break down in their cars, do you know whether they have the right kit to ensure they are safe and they are able to support the people they care for?

The following are considered Year-round essentials:

  • A fully charged mobile phone and in car charger.
  • Hi-viz bib
  • Road map – in case of diversions
  • First aid kit
  • Water & non-perishable food
  • Loose change
  • Umbrella or water proof
  • Breakdown service and insurance company contact details
  • Hazard triangle.

In Winter, it’s worth staff keeping these items in their vehicle too:

  • A coat, hat, scarf, gloves and extra warm clothing
  • A spare pair of shoes or boots
  • Shovel
  • Ice scraper and de-icer
  • Torch and batteries
  • Extra snacks (chocolate or cereal bars)
  • Extra screenwash.

When the forecast is for severe weather and your staff still have to be out, then it’s good to consider them packing these items too:

  • Blanket or sleeping bag
  • A flask of hot drink

Useful information, which can be shared with your staff can be found via:  Which? How to drive in snow

ROPA – How to drive in snow

Norfolk County Council can also provide assistance to organisations to ensure that you are compliant with H&S legislation and that drivers are operating in the safest possible way. Further details of the support available can be found at:




Winter Planning – Local gritting routes

A couple of weeks ago we let you know about local gritting routes.  The three hour gritting runs cover 2,200 miles of roads in Norfolk, covering commuter and major bus routes and, as far as possible, one route into all villages.  You can find local gritting routes by clicking on this link: Gritting routes for Norfolk.  Gritting plans are also shared via local radio and Facebook.

It is starting to get colder, so to find out about specific weather and road information you can also check out the Council’s latest news section by clicking on this link: Norfolk County Council Twitter feed.

Ensure Business Resilience at winter time by:

  • Having a Continuity Plan
  • Testing it works
  • Keeping it up-to-date
  • Ensuring those who need to know about your plan do, and they know how to use it too.

Winter Planning – Managing Client Expectations

Norfolk County Council have received feedback around how we can support home support providers during inclement weather. As a result, NCC have written the attached letter which is designed to be a joint communication to service users from us and your organisation to manage expectations throughout winter.

To use this communication, you must complete the following:

  • Add your company logo in the top right
  • Complete the text highlighted in red with the appropriate details

No other amendments are to be made to this letter which can by downloaded via this link:  Winter Communications letter template 26.11.18.



A reminder about Flu Vaccinations

Following on from the blog post in September …..

Have your employees had their flu vaccinations? If not, please inform them they can get a free flu vaccination by completing this letter and taking it to a pharmacy or GP surgery that provides the vaccination.

The aim of the campaign is to get as many health and social care staff working with vulnerable older people vaccinated. It is targeted at staff employed by a registered residential care/nursing home or registered home support provider,as well as health and care staff employed by a voluntary managed hospice provider, who are directly involved in the care of vulnerable patients/clients aged 65 and over.

The campaign is underway and we are keen to see as many care workers vaccinated as possible. Please take the letter (as linked above) to your local pharmacist or GP for the free flu vaccination. They may also require some proof they are employed as a support worker, providing care for older people.

Please could you also consider displaying this Public Health England poster on flu out breaks in areas used regularly by your staff?

Winter Planning – ffffreeeezing

We’ve been blogging about your Continuity Plans for this winter and although not particularly cold at the moment, it will be a good idea to prepare for those little or big emergencies that could effect your business.

One thing that can make a difference to whether or not you can support a person in their own home is the weather.  So thinking about how your business will cope in extreme weather if the roads get snowy or icy, will really help your business, staff and the people you support.

So, as we approach winter we are encouraging you, our Home Support providers, as part of your Continuity Planning to ensure you and your staff are regularly updated about the latest weather reports.  Information on the weather can be obtained from the following links:

Met Office Weather Warnings

Environment Agency – Flood Warnings etc.

It is not possible to grit all the roads across Norfolk during icy weather, so it will be useful to find out which ones are.  For information about local gritting routes when you’ve had an alert about cold weather snaps, please click on the following link:  Local gritting routes across Norfolk

Ensure Business Resilience at winter time by:

  • Having a Continuity Plan
  • Testing it works
  • Keeping it up-to-date
  • Ensuring those who need to know about your plan do, and they know how to use it too.


Winter Planning – Continuity Planning

Further to last week’s blog regarding Continuity planning, we would recommend looking at the Norfolk Resilience Forum.  They have lots of help and advice on developing and testing your Business Continuity Plans.  The website can be found here:  Norfolk prepared

You can seek further advice relating to your business needs via the following useful links too:

Business Advice

Ensure Business Resilience at winter time by:

  • Having a Continuity Plan
  • Testing it works
  • Keeping it up-to-date
  • Ensuring those who need to know do, and they know how to use it too.

Business Continuity – Staff cover

Yesterday, we highlighted the need to ensure you have a robust Continuity Plan in place and that it is fit for purpose; especially during the winter months.

One area we encouraged you to consider is that of staff sickness and the impact this could have on your ability to cover all of your care calls.

Recruitment is vital to the stability of your business, so please remember you can use the Norfolk Care Careers website to advertise all of your vacancies at no extra charge.  For example, you can post vacancies looking specifically for workers for temporary periods of time and/or to cover particular times of the day and/or locations; all of which will help you increase your work force where and when you most need it over the winter period.

If you have not yet registered, please visit the ‘Get in Touch’ page on the website,, or email us at