Bishop blesses gritting lorries
A bishop has been called in to bless a council's gritting lorries in an attempt bid to cut road deaths in bad weather reports the news agency Ananova.
The Bishop of Lincoln, the Right Rev Dr John Saxbee, led prayers at a gritting depot in his home city while simultaneous services were held at eight other depots around the county.
Dr Saxbee asked God to be with all drivers at this treacherous time of the year, when icy roads lead to hundreds of road accidents.
The idea is that as salt is spread by the gritters, the road safety blessing will be extended on to the county's 5,572-mile road network on which more than 100 people died last year.
Chief Inspector Paul Elliott, who came up with the idea, is also asking churches across the county to hold a prayer session, coinciding with a full gritting operation, to strengthen the blessing's power.
The officer, who is a member of the Lincolnshire Christian Police Association, said he had the idea in a conversation with a woman in the village of Navenby.
He said: "We were discussing theological matters and how, given the number of deaths on Lincolnshire's roads, they seemed to be cursed and would benefit from salting. In the Bible salt is used as a form of blessing and this seemed a natural remedy."
In his specially-written blessing for 39 gritting lorries, their drivers and dozens of tonnes of salt, the Bishop prayed: "Dear God of love, be with those who travel on our roads by night and day.
"May they be alert in situations of danger, patient and courteous to fellow travellers and attentive to the rules of the road."