Heavy snow to bring risk of disruption on Friday

Snow in an Exeter street in December 2010

16 January 2013 - The Met Office is warning of the risk of disruption as heavy snow is forecast across many parts of the UK on Friday.

A band of rain will push into the west into Friday morning, turning increasingly to sleet and snow. Parts of northwest England, Wales and the west midlands are particularly at risk of seeing significant falls of snow and the risk of blizzard conditions in the strong winds.

Met Office Severe Weather Warnings have been issued for the heavy snow. An amber warning is in place for parts of Wales and western England where accumulations of 10 to 15 cm are expected and 20 cm or more over the hills.

Met Office weather warnings help you plan, prepare and protect yourself and others from the impacts of severe weather. An amber warning means you need to be prepared for the weather and take steps to change your plans and protect you, your family and your community from the impacts of the severe weather.

Whilst snow will fall over most areas, the far west, including Northern Ireland, Cornwall and extreme western parts of Wales are expected to see rain.

Eddy Carroll, Met Office Chief Forecaster, said: "The snow is expected to be heaviest through Friday morning, slowly weakening and clearing east during the second half of the day.

"Clearly there is the potential for significant disruption to peoples plans. We should all keep up to date with the latest weather forecasts, advice from local agencies and be prepared to change our travel plans if necessary."

Warnings of heavy snow on Friday
Chief Forecaster Eddy Carroll explains the warnings and what weather to expect over the next few days.

Expected snow accumulations between 0600 and midnight on Friday 18th Jan 2013

Darron Burness, head of the AA's severe weather team, said: "With the outlook remaining cold, drivers need to be prepared for possible disruption.

"Before heading out, check the Met Office weather alerts and traffic reports and allow a bit more time for your journey, as you don't want to rush on potentially icy roads. Do the basic checks on your car and, in case of any problems, carry plenty of warm clothing, blankets, de-icer and scraper, some food, hot flask and a fully-charged mobile."

Steve Crosthwaite, head of the Highways Agency's National Traffic Operations Centre said: "We advise drivers to check road conditions and the Met Office weather forecast before they set off and during severe weather to consider whether their journey is essential. They may want to delay their travel until conditions improve and to allow our winter fleet the chance to treat the roads.

"Our traffic officers are working round the clock to monitor the network, deal with any incidents and keep traffic moving."

Over the weekend we will see less severe conditions but further outbreaks of rain, sleet and snow are expected to push in from the west at times. The snow that has fallen will be slow to melt and ice will continue to be a risk, especially at night.

By thinking ahead we can all be better prepared for severe weather. Throughout the winter, the Met Office works with agencies across the UK to help keep the country safe, well and on the move.

Contact information

Met Office Press Office: +44 (0)1392 886655

E-mail: Press Office

Met Office Customer Centre: 0870 900 0100

If you're outside the UK: +44 1392 885680

Last updated: 16 January 2013