UK & World News

  • 23 January 2013, 0:49

Cold Weather: Icy Spell Claims Fourth Victim

A man has been confirmed as the fourth to die in Britain's freezing weather after he apparently slipped on ice after an evening out.

James Hurst had been dropped by a taxi near his home in Worsley Street in Accrington, Lancashire, after spending time at a local pub on Saturday.

Neighbours found the 57-year-old's body on a doorstep at about 8am the next day.

Police confirmed Mr Hurst suffered a head injury, which they were treating as an accident.

The recent heavy snow and frost has also claimed the life of postman John Bircham, who died during freezing temperatures on Exmoor.

He collapsed as he approached the end of his deliveries in and around the Somerset town of Dulverton on Saturday.

Friends paid tribute to the "quiet, friendly" man, who had lived in Dulverton all his life.

School friend John Atkins, secretary and treasurer at Dulverton Town Football Club, where Mr Bircham was a prolific striker during the 1970s, said: "As a footballer, John was as tough as nails - players used to bounce off him.

"But he was very gentle. There was never any nastiness in his play."

Snow and ice have caused travel disruption and dangerous driving conditions across much of the country in recent days and the wintry weather is forecast to stay around until the weekend.

Bernadette Lee, 25, also died in sub-zero temperatures at the weekend in Deal, Kent.

Ms Lee was found in the front garden of the house next door to her sister's by a man walking his dog on Sunday morning.

It is thought she was on her way to her sister's home following a night out.

Kent Police are investigating the cause of death but there are reports she had no visible injuries and was found without a coat.

One friend, James Tehrani, said Ms Lee was "funny, vibrant, chatty and very much in love with life".

Meanwhile, a man was killed in another weather-related incident when the car he was driving left the road and crashed into a tree on the A12 in Essex on Sunday night.

Elsewhere, 16-year-old Liam Stafford remains critically ill in hospital after being injured while sledging in Flatts Lane Country Park, Normanby in Middlesbrough on Sunday afternoon.

East of England Ambulance Service has issued a warning after it was called out to attend at least a dozen sledging-related injuries, including broken bones and head wounds.

London Fire Brigade told people to stay off the ice after being called to rescue two men who had fallen through frozen lakes while trying to rescue their dog.

A 15-year-old boy needed hospital treatment after he stepped onto icy water in Sutton Park, Birmingham, and fell in. He was able to get himself out of the water by the time rescue crews arrived.

Emergency services in Devon were called to a serious crash on Tuesday morning after several vehicles spun off the main route into Plymouth. One person was seriously hurt.

Advertisement