Scotland rail network crippled by weather

Scotland's rail network was crippled by snow and freezing temperatures today.

Services to the north were cancelled as icy conditions continued to thwart travel across the country.



Motorists were warned of black ice on the roads but there was better news for air passengers as flights resumed at Edinburgh Airport.



Many schools remained closed, with pupils in East Lothian, the Borders and Midlothian council areas off until Monday.



Edinburgh City Council said all secondary schools would open along with 44 primary schools.



A statement on train operator ScotRail's website said: "The extreme weather continues and ScotRail is maintaining as resilient a service as possible when alternative road options are extremely daunting.



"However, due to the extreme weather and plummeting temperatures, we have no option but to withdraw the following services: West Highland Line, Far North Line Aberdeen - Inverness, Perth - Inverness and Glasgow Queen St - Inverness."



Kinbrace in the Highlands was the coldest place overnight, with a low of minus 20.9C. Braemar was not much warmer at minus 20.4C.



Aberdeen saw temperatures of minus 16.8, Edinburgh was minus 15C and Glasgow was minus 10.5C.



More snow showers will sweep the country today as winds from the west bring a new band of severe weather.



The east of Scotland has seen the brunt of heavy snowfall this week but it should see lighter showers later today, according to forecasters.



Matt Dobson, from MeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said: "The winds from the east are finally giving way to winds from the west.



"There's a band of sleet and snow which will fall across central Scotland with rain and sleet close to the west coast.



"There's a low risk of freezing rain for a time in western coastal areas.



"After a very cold start temperatures across much of Scotland will hover just below zero.



"Temperatures on the west coast will rise during the day above zero to around 5C or 6C.



"Tonight there will be patchy sleet and snow which will move across the east and Edinburgh but it shouldn't be as heavy as previous days.



"A widespread frost and ice will affect Scotland tonight."



Bands of volunteers have been helping others in their area who cannot get out due to the snow.



Auxiliary nurse Samantha Glennie and her brother Lee in Dundee set up a Facebook page, Helping The Dundee Folk in Distress.



The description on the site said: "Anyone needing bread, milk or any other groceries at this bad time in Dundee, we will come and deliver within Dundee area ... we buy the stuff for you, give you the receipt and you give us however much it cost and a small donation for petrol :)"



The Scottish Government announced yesterday that regulations on how long gritter drivers can be behind the wheel had been suspended due to the severe weather.



In the Highlands, Northern Constabulary have agreed a deal with a group of 4x4 drivers who will help officers during the winter months.



The force has teamed up with the Highland 4x4 Response Group which will provide vehicles and drivers to police when required.



Sergeant Robbie MacDonald, of the force's emergency planning unit, said: "Clearly winter weather can throw up a number of logistical problems for police and the support being given by the Highland 4x4 Response Group is warmly welcomed and will, no doubt, prove to be a valuable resource in the coming weeks and months."

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Sales Executive or Senior Sales Executive - B2B Exhibitions

£18000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Executive or Senior Sal...

Recruitment Genius: Head of Support Services

£40000 - £55000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Warehouse Team Leader

£22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This industry leading company produces h...

Recruitment Genius: Business Development Manager / Sales - OTE £40,000

£20000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT provider for the educat...

Day In a Page

A nap a day could save your life - and here's why

A nap a day could save your life

A midday nap is 'associated with reduced blood pressure'
If men are so obsessed by sex, why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?

If men are so obsessed by sex...

...why do they clam up when confronted with the grisly realities?
The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3

Jon Thoday and Richard Allen-Turner

The comedy titans of Avalon on their attempt to save BBC3
The bathing machine is back... but with a difference

Rolling in the deep

The bathing machine is back but with a difference
Part-privatised tests, new age limits, driverless cars: Tories plot motoring revolution

Conservatives plot a motoring revolution

Draft report reveals biggest reform to regulations since driving test introduced in 1935
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory