UK snow: Commuters face battle with ice, floods and plummeting temperatures, as it is revealed wintry blast could last until mid March
Commuters could face miserable journeys to and from work well into next month
Commuters will continue to battle snow, ice, flood waters and plummeting temperatures tomorrow, as it emerged that the latest wintry blast could last until the middle of March.
Around four inches of snow fell in northern England and the Midlands overnight, prompting over 100 flood alerts, while much of Scotland and southern England received around two inches.
Ice caused widespread rush hour disruption, with a dozen schools closed across the country, roads left treacherous and rail services disrupted.
The AA said that by midday it had attended 6,800 breakdowns across the country, with more than 60 cars stuck in snow or flood water.
Conditions worsened over the course of the day with hilly areas, particularly in Scotland, continuing to see snow fall and temperatures in the Welsh mountains, southern Pennines and at the top of the Cotswolds below freezing.
And for those hoping today's snow could be the last of the winter, the forecast for the next 30 days will make grim reading.
The Met Office is predicting the current wintery blast will continue for some time yet, with low temperatures and further snow lasting well into March.
Helen Roberts of the Met Office said: “It will be drier but colder for the next 30 days. If there is any precipitation it is more likely to fall as snow.”
Speaking oflast night's snowfall, Nick Prebble, a forecaster for MeteoGroup, said: “There has been quite a lot of snow overnight, the worst affected areas are northern England down through to the Midlands and towards the south-east, and of course Scotland.
“Everywhere will see a covering, with most places seeing between one and two inches, but it won't be surprise if some areas get more than four inches.
“There are reports of nearly four and a half inches in High Wycombe, and even up to an inch in London.
“The snow will linger in the early morning before slowly easing and being replaced by rain in many places.
The Environment Agency continues to have over 100 flood alerts in place, covering large parts of central and south England.
Twenty-three more serious flood warnings have been issued in parts of the south-west and the Midlands.
However, the agency said on its website that the forecast risk of flooding across England and Wales is “very low”.
A forecaster for MeteoGroup said: “There is no heavy rain forecast for today, but the rain from yesterday may have saturated ground and the snow melt could add to this.”
Across the Midlands, about a dozen schools were closed by the wintry weather.
The heavy and persistent rain which preceded the snow also caused rivers to “react very quickly” said Dave Throup, Environment Agency Manager for Herefordshire and Worcestershire.
However he added: “We're not expecting big levels of property flooding.”
Although rivers would be higher, they were not yet anywhere near the disruptive levels reached over Christmas and New Year period.
He said: “We're keeping an eye on the rainfall forecast later this week for Wednesday and Thursday, because that will be falling on saturated ground when the risk of flooding then becomes greater.”
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