Drivers urged to stay off roads unless absolutely necessary as snow blankets Surrey (From Redhill And Reigate Life)
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Drivers urged to stay off roads unless absolutely necessary as snow blankets Surrey
1:38pm Friday 18th January 2013 in Local News
Surrey Police is urging motorists to only make essential journeys following the heavy snowfall across the county this morning. The Force said although major routes are running freely at this time, the freezing weather has made driving conditions treacherous on some minor roads. It said its priority is to ensure the safety of all road-users and residents, especially those who are vulnerable. The Force is working with the Highways Agency and other partner organisations to ensure the welfare of road-users, and said it is trying to reach urgent incidents as quickly as possible. A Surrey Police spokeswoman said: “Staff are working hard with colleagues to ensure an effective emergency service continues to operate, despite the weather conditions.” She said: “Drivers are advised not to travel unless their journey is absolutely necessary, and anyone who must use the road should allow lots of extra time for their journey, avoid high speeds and heavy braking, and pack a blanket, warm clothes, food and a hot drink in case they become stranded. “Drivers who choose to travel and then become stuck should call their recovery company, rather than police, and be prepared for a potentially long wait.” Superintendent Sue Lampard said: "We have already seen significant snowfall across the county and with more forecast for the rest of the day and the weekend, we are urging people to only venture onto the roads if absolutely necessary.”
Supt Lampard added: "The conditions across the county are making any travel treacherous and we are advising people to take sensible precautions.” Surrey Police said anyone planning to travel should check the weather forecast and road conditions first by visiting: www.metoffice.gov.uk and www.highways.gov.uk Additionally, the Force advised people that before they set off in icy or snowy conditions, to make sure they have enough fuel, carry warm clothing, a blanket, spade, food, water, a charged mobile phone and a torch. Motorists should de-ice windows and remove snow from their vehicle’s roof, make sure their vehicle battery is fully charged, select second gear to pull away, choose a lower gear going downhill and avoid braking too sharply. People should also make sure someone knows when they are leaving and when they aim to arrive, should allow extra time for their journey, reduce their speed, increase the distance between them and the vehicle in front, and if they start to skid, ease off the accelerator but never brake suddenly. Motorists should use dipped headlights if visibility is poor and use their rear fog lights if visibility falls below 100 metres, but not forget to turn them off if there is a vehicle directly behind. Motorists who have to leave their vehicle should make sure it is secure and take any valuable items with them.