Gritters could be deployed in Hampshire due to fears roads could melt

The county's gritters are on standby during the hot weather. Picture: Hampshire County Council/Twitter
The county's gritters are on standby during the hot weather. Picture: Hampshire County Council/Twitter

Police promoting safety messages at Guildhall Walk in Portsmouth

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They are usually called into action when snow and ice are on the way, but yesterday the county’s gritters were on stand-by for a different reason.

Hampshire County Council tweeted a picture of two of their vehicles as the recent heatwave led to surface temperatures of up to 40C in parts of the country.

The gritters, which are currently on stand-by, can be used to spread dust on the roads.

The dust can soak up bitumen, a key material in building roads, which can soften in the heat.

Gritters have been called into action across the country to stop roads melting.

Today could be Britain’s hottest June day for 40 years, with highs of 34C forecast in parts of west London.

Temperatures in Portsmouth are expected to reach about 25C today.

Temperatures in Portsmouth are expected to reach about 25C today.

If the mercury surpasses the 31.7C (89F) recorded at Camden Square, north London, in 1936, it will be the hottest summer solstice on record.

Temperatures in the Portsmouth area are expected to reach 25C.

The Met Office has issued an amber alert, saying the heatwave is likely to last until tomorrow morning.

But there could be a risk of thunderstorms later in the week.