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Snow and ice hit driving conditions across UK

By: William Hobson
30 November 2010

Motorists have been warned to be cautious when travelling through much of the North and Scotland, as the country experiences its earliest widespread snowfall since 1993.

The cold weather conditions and the subsequent disruptions seem likely to cause difficulties for those in logistics companies jobs and on the road over the next few days. Both the RAC and the AA have issued cold weather warnings, whilst the BBC reports that conditions on roads in West Yorkshire and East Yorkshire have been described as "hazardous" due to ice. Several bypasses, such as the Lund bypass and the B1249 near Driffield, have already been closed following crashes.

On Saturday morning, the A1061 and A196 were closed after more than 14 inches of snow fell in parts of Northumbria. As far south as the Severn Crossing, the Highways Agency closed one lane of the M4 as a precaution when ice began to form on the bridge. Whilst it has since been reopened, a spokesman urged drivers to take care.

The brunt of the cold weather has fallen mainly across the North. In Northumbria, Durham police warned that roads are "passable with care" and advised motorists to stay at home if possible after temperatures hit -5°C on Saturday night, with more than six inches of snow falling in two hours. The winter weather conditions are expected to continue into next week, with 4-8 inches of snow forecast for the region's higher areas.

However, it is Scotland that has suffered the most disruption. The Scotsman reports closures on the A9, the A90, the A1, the M8 and the M90. Victoria Kettley, a weather forecaster for MeteoGroup, said that inland Scotland "would be lucky to get above freezing" and "we're still expecting it to remain cold throughout the rest of the week, bitterly cold.''

The poor conditions are predicted to spread south. According to Philip Avery, BBC broadcast meteorologist, temperatures will plummet overnight on Monday causing roads to freeze in many places. Other forecasts predict the cold will be exacerbated by strengthening winds, with warnings of heavy snowfall across the entire east coast of England.

The Met Office has also warned of a risk of snowfall in Kent and the greater London Area from Tuesday.

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