Heavy snow hits the region

PEOPLE across Suffolk and Essex were expected to wake up to wintry scenes this morning as forecasters warn of severe weather conditions.

Anthony Bond

PEOPLE across Suffolk and Essex were expected to wake up to wintry scenes this morning as forecasters warn of severe weather conditions.

Overnight snowfall was due across much of the region with up to 1cm to 2cm in most places. Drivers have been warned that this could lead to treacherous driving conditions.

With cold winds from western Russian battering the county temperatures could feel as cold as -4C (25F).

Forecaster Ken Blowers said yesterday: “Bitterly cold winds from western Russia are continuing to hit Suffolk over the next 48 hours.

“Although amounts of snow are uncertain, there could be substantial amounts. The cold spell will probably last for the whole of next week. It will be the most severe spell of the current winter.”

Most Read

Phil Garner, a forecaster at Weatherquest, warned that rush hour driving conditions this eveningcould be affected by the weather.

“There is an organised area of snow or sleet in the east and so a high risk of snow on Monday afternoon and that may be more of a problem for the afternoon rush hour period.”

Although the cold weather is expected to last throughout the week, Mr Garner said the risk of snow will be reduced as the week progresses.

A spokesman for the East of England Ambulance Service said the trust had staff on standby if the weather caused problems, including the use of 4x4 vehicles to get to locations cut off by snow. He added that the service was keeping a close watch on the weather forecasts.

Essex Police warned drivers to be extra-vigilant due to the severe weather forecast for the country.

A spokeswoman said: “Motorists should stop to think that taking a few more minutes on the way to work is surely preferable to being involved in a collision.”

A spokeswoman for the Met Office said: “Sunday night and Monday will really see the snow coming in and by the end of Monday there will be a couple of centimetres settled.

“By Tuesday there may be more and we could be looking at ten centimetres of snow.

“The week itself looks cold and there will be snow showers from time to time throughout this period. The snow may be gone by the end of the week but the cold weather may still hang around.

“The east coast will probably see the most of this weather but from Tuesday onwards you could end up with snow across the whole country.”

Nationally, forecasters have warned that up to 10cm of snow could have fallen in places overnightwith Lincolnshire and Yorkshire likely to be worst affected.

With overall temperatures in December and January between 1C (34F) and 1.5C (35F) below average and a freezing start to February looking likely, some forecasters have said the last time the winter months were as cold was in 1995-1996.