UK & World News
Weather: Snow Causes Road And Rail Delays
Heavy snow across the country is bringing widespread disruption to commuters making their way home for the weekend.
Blizzard conditions and drifting snow are spreading across the whole country from west to east.
Most areas will see up to 10cm (4ins) of snow falling, which will hit road and rail networks as thousands head home for the weekend.
Train services in Scotland have been disrupted because of drifting snow and flights at Manchester Airport are subject to delays due to snow on the runway.
Many key motorways, including the M40, M4, M5 and M6 are reporting congestion and delays.
The AA has encouraged motorists to check conditions before setting out.
The last flurries come ahead of the big thaw, which is due over the weekend and will bring with it the threat of flooding.
As temperatures rise, heavy rain is expected and will increase the flood risk, bringing more misery to those dealing with the aftermath of last month's heavy rains.
Nazaneen Ghaffar, Sky News Weather Presenter, said: "The rain, sleet and snow will become heavy and push southeastwards towards this evening, however southeast England and East Anglia should stay dry until tonight.
"With strong winds (mainly in the north) there will be the risk of blizzard conditions and drifting.
"Significant accumulations of snow are expected, up to 10cm (4ins) in most areas and possibly double that across the hills and mountains of Scotland and Cumbria.
"The sleet and snow will spread into East Anglia and southeast England tonight then it should clear by the early hours of the morning.
"Showers will follow behind that rain across many northern and western areas, some of these will turn wintry on higher ground."
Temperatures are expected to rise to an average of 4C before reaching more than 10C in the south on Sunday.
The Met Office has 12 amber warnings in place from the Midlands up to central England, urging the public to be prepared for likely disruption caused by the heavy snow.
There are also a number of yellow warnings in Wales, southwest England and London and the South East.
Almost one in five people have not been able to work a full day because of the bad weather, according to a survey by Green Flag Breakdown.
Despite delays, the survey of more than 2,000 workers found that many had chosen to travel on public transport instead of driving.
Darron Burness, of the AA, said: "It's difficult for forecasters to know the extent of the snowfall, so check the local weather and traffic reports before heading out and be prepared for possible disruption.
"Take extra care, particularly on higher ground, and allow extra time for your journey."
The number of deaths during the cold snap, which is now into its second week, is now in double figures.
The latest victim was a 42-year-old man who died after his car careered into a river as he was driving his daughter on the school run along a bridle path near the Monsal Trail, north of the A6 in Derbyshire.
Other casualties of the cold spell include postman John Bircham, 57, who collapsed soon after he was towed out of a snowdrift in Dulverton, Somerset, on Saturday, and Bernadette Lee, 25, who was found collapsed in the snow in Deal, Kent, on Sunday following a night out.
The Environment Agency has warned of the risk of flooding.
The agency's flood risk manager, Phil Rothwell, said: "A combination of rain and snow melt over the weekend will increase the risk of flooding, especially in south west England, Wales, the West Midlands and northern England."
The severe weather has caused widespread disruption over the past week, including hundreds of flights cancelled and schools closed.
At one stage 30 people had to spend the night in a shelter after becoming stranded when the A39 between Bridgwater and Williton in Somerset became impassable in the early hours of Wednesday.
what do you think?
Its -22 degrees in Eastern Europe now. . Buses still running, trains still running, people still going into work. We might get 2cm of snow here - watch everything grind to a halt, panic buying of food and people acting like a new ice age has started. GET A GRIP BRITAIN!
Its stupid to compare us to eastern europe.thats like comparing our summers to that off australia.have you ever been to these countries you mention.then youll know.though agreed the panic buying is stupid , though this brought about by media hype.
Lived in Prague for years
Then you should know how much better equiped they are with the snow.in most of these countries its against the law to drive on summer tyres in winter.i cant see the goverment making such a law here without a backlash by the public.you got to remember they get as excited about the snow as we get excited about our rain.
French and German airports have suffered far greater dissruption this week than Heathrow. About time this others cope better myth is nailed once and for all.
If the govt spent millions on making us the same as places that have snow pretty much all year round we would all complain that it's a waste of money when we generally only get a week of snow. It's boring now listening to you moaning we can't cope. So what if a couple of planes don't take off. If people panic buy well then hey, it's their money. Let them throw it around. I got to work ok, my kids school only closed for one day. I can't see the problem.
Agreed Stevie. People saying that European airports and transport shut as well. Very true, but not because of 5cm of snow, more like 5ft. Real snow.
Our airports werent shut be cause of snow on the runways but more visabilty problems.its also worth noting that airports abroad in snowy areas are heated or at least the taxiing areas are where the main problems occur and they also have better chemical de icing machines.
Shaun, in fairness i work at a major UK airport. Many of them invested heavily in snow-clearing gear after the snow of 2 years ago. The problem is that not all aircraft are rated to operate in such conditions, minor though they are. They say it's snow on the runway to avoid saying 1 aircraft is better than the other in inclement weather.
That doesnt surprize me lorgar.i remember british rail announcing that trains were late because of leaves on the line and actually it was true some inter city trains couldnt get good traction on the rails and would take great chunks out of the rails.but when british rail annouced this fact they were ridiculed
I wonder how many teachers will spend the weekend in their school because its too dangerous to drive home !!
Simple answer to the Teachers not turning up for work,the same situation I would be in if I dont turn up for work.NO WORK NO PAY and a reprimand.
That won't happen in the public sector Foster!
Teachers are not paid if they don't go to school if it's open, so it's the same situation - no work, no pay. Absolutely right, too. Closing a school is a nightmare and rightly so as it's so disruptive to everyone.
dont get paid in public sector either.4x4 went out to get nurses. if they couldnt come in they used up a holiday.
That's something that foster and Lorgar would not understand. Their view of public sector pay for not going in was probably created by the Mail and Express - they are obviously unaware of the truth.
Its got to be remembered that other nations have snow on the ground all winter not like us that have the odd week or two.in many scandenavian countries its law to have winter tyres on all cars and buses and lorrys have studded tyres.there are no taps outside, triple glazing is standard, and peaple have proper winter clothes.the kids in these countries take ski boots to school for their p.e lessons.they spend millions on high tech snow machines.its just not worth the uk to invest in such things.for example the mandatory tyres you have to buy in these countries cost £250 each, and thats just to fit a citreon.as ive said before these countries get as excited about the snow as we get excited about the rain in summer.
Its the reason why these countries do so much better than us at the winter olympics.
It's ridiculous that people compare our one week of snow with their year round conditions. As if we will ever be as prepared as they are. We don't need to be.
Yes anghared. How many peaple will want to pay.£ 1000 pounds for winter tyres let alone a rise in tax.
I just scrape by replacing normal tyres let alone paying out for snow tyres which I will need for 2 weeks max. Would rather train my dog to pull some sort of sled. Also orange doesn't like the word f orking....
Shaun bet you needed to see that word 'flooding' like a hole in the head ?
Its not been too bad here. Blue side havent seen any snow at all.and waters gone back to normal though fields are still very very waterlogged
Not again, gonna look out for the idiot from the council who drove his snow plough into the side of my car.
Ooops Neil don't think I would be a happy bunny about that either
Is your car white by any chance.
Blizzard going on outside my window as we speak. Brrrrrrrrr it's cold :(
Keep it Val - time to break out a bottle and hibernate
Will do. :D
It's a good job the Germans only dropped bombs in the war. If they'd have dropped snow we'd all be goose-stepping now...
Yawn. Here's another one ....
Another over-blown severe weather report? Agreed.
Agree with that, still waiting for my blizzard. Nothing to report captain and planes still in the sky above
The winter of 1939-1940 was, according to the media at the time, reported as 'the worst winter ever', but 1946-47 was even worse. Fortunately, it hit both sides equally and given the technology of the day, aerial operations were impossible.
Well it's blowing a hoolie here and I have had my face stabbed by cantankerous little spiky raindrops during a particularly miserable bus duty. So cold - even colder feeling than when we had snow! It's wild out there and I'm staying put with roaring fire and chocolate supplies!
Same here movvi. Went out earlier and the gale force wind and nasty sleet was very cruel indeed. TV and glass of wine tonight
Teachers have no say in whether their school is closed its down to the local authority . It's also about pupils getting to and from school safely.
Well said! If the bus companies refuse to make the return trip to take them home because of bad weather, you end up with a thousand people in a building without sufficient food or any bedding for the night. I bet there'd be complaints then! Damned if you do and damned if you don't, I suppose. Ironically, people just need educating on this point!
It's very irritating that bits of the country are coming to a standstill and people are dying in the snow, yet all most can find to gripe about is the one specific group - teachers - that seems to get loads of paid time off during snowy weather. I would love a few to clarify where and how this happens - I'd like a free transfer! Snowdays are very inconvenient and expensive where I am!