Rail track deicers

Rail track deicers for ice melting

During the winter months, the cold weather can play havoc with the reliable, safe running of trains. All too often, ice, frost or snow can cause trains to have to stop running for the safety of those on board. Using a specialist deicer product to clear rail tracks, railway crossings, platforms, and other areas can help keep things moving smoothly. Even on very cold days, as EcoGrit deicer can work in temperatures down to minus 20 degrees C with effects lasting for up to seven days.

What is a deicer? Is it safe for ice to melt on rail tracks?

Deicing products work by lowering the melting point of frozen ice or snow, which turns it back into a liquid that can flow safely away. This reduces the many risks associated with slippery icy patches. Using a salt-free deicer helps to protect surrounding surfaces, wildlife and vehicles by offering a non-toxic, corrosion-free alternative method of clearing away unwanted ice, frost and snow. It is perfectly safe to use on rail tracks, as well as surrounding areas, including platforms, railway crossings and station car parks.

Winter effects on railway tracks

Winter weather can cause all sorts of adverse effects on the railway network. High winds can blow large objects onto the lines, causing a dangerous obstruction. Heavy rain can cause landslips. Low temperatures can cause points and signals to freeze over. However, when it comes to the rail tracks themselves, settling frost, ice and snow can cause a very high level of delay. This is because it becomes unsafe for trains to travel along with them if ice and snow are not cleared, and the tracks are treated with a deicer to melt the frozen water as quickly as possible.

Delays and shutdowns

Railway tracks covered in frozen ice and snow can cause lengthy delays and even shutdowns. This is because the trains are not safe running along frozen railway lines due to the risk of slipping and sliding off the tracks. Frozen points and signals can also cause chaos on sub-zero days. One solution is to treat affected areas with a salt-free deicer such as EcoGrit. If freezing temperatures are forecast, EcoGrit can be applied in advance and can work for up to seven days. This can help minimise delays and shutdowns and keep railway passengers and workers safer in winter.

Railroad accidents

Railroad accidents are thankfully becoming rarer as increased safety measures are put in place to protect people who use and work on the railway. In the winter, the arrival of sub-zero temperatures, high winds, frost, ice and snow raises the potential risk of accidents taking place. Using a strong, effective deicer to help keep the rail tracks clear from icy patches can help keep trains running safely and smoothly. Equally, applying deicer to platforms, railway crossings, and station car parks can also help keep passengers and rail workers safely on their feet while they are moving around the station.


Derailments are rare, but they can happen. A derailment can lead to varying consequences, depending on the seriousness of the event. Whatever happens, however, a derailment can cause extensive disruption, delay and distress. So, it is important to take all measures to avoid them from happening. Using EcoGrit ice melt, even the night before an expected frost or snowfall, can help a lot. The salt-free deicer works down to temperatures of minus 20 degrees °C and is effective on a range of exterior surfaces, from rail tracks, points and signals to railway crossings and station car parks.

Prevention is the key to protecting

They say that prevention is better than cure. This is also true of protecting rail tracks and surfaces in the winter months. Treating areas that could become frosty with EcoGrit in advance will help protect surfaces from ice and snow, as well as prevent concrete or tarmac cracking from water ingress damage. So, keep an eye on the weather forecast this winter and schedule applications of EcoGrit in advance of sub-zero temperatures arriving. This will give the infrastructure the best chance of surviving winter intact. Check stocks now to make sure that there are sufficient supplies to cope with the onslaught of winter weather that is inevitably just around the corner.

Keep railways operating in the worst of winter weather with EcoGrit

EcoGrit not only melts frozen water on rail tracks, enabling trains to pass over them safely once more, but it can be applied the night before an expected frost to help stave off the worst of the ice and snow’s effects. In the same way, EcoGrit can be applied to railway points and signals to prevent moving parts from freezing over and to keep the mechanism moving smoothly. Deicing frozen station car parks and platforms also helps keep passengers and workers safer from slips and trips that can potentially delay train operations.

Prevent ice on third rails and protect against the winter

Third rails, or railway lines that supply live electricity to the trains, are a key part of railway operations and must be protected during extreme weather conditions. During icy weather, it is important to keep these lines clear of frozen water to help protect them from cracks or damage. Using a non-corrosive, salt-free ice melt on these lines can help keep things in good condition and doesn’t cause any harm to the tracks themselves or the undersides of trains.


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