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Warning issued over risk of snow and ice

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With freezing conditions continuing across Devon, the county is now facing a risk of snow and ice this afternoon and through the night.

The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for snow and ice across large parts of Devon from 6pm today until 10am tomorrow morning.

Although widespread snowfall is forecast to be light, there could be around 4cm on higher ground such as Haldon Hill and Dartmoor later this evening.

Road surface temperatures are expected to remain sub-zero from this afternoon until around 10am tomorrow morning, so Devon’s gritters will again be carrying out multiple treatments on all of the county’s main routes. They were out from 2pm this afternoon, and will undertake further treatments again at 9pm this evening and overnight at 3am. Around 14 miles of cycle routes around Exeter will also be treated early this evening.

We’re liaising closely with partner organisations such as Devon and Cornwall Police and National Highways to monitor Haldon Hill and Telegraph Hill. Extra resources including tractors and ploughs are on standby and ready to respond should conditions worsen.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Cabinet Member for Highway Management, said:

“This latest weather warning means that snow and sleet could fall on freezing roads, and despite multiple gritting treatments over the past few days conditions on our roads may still be challenging. Untreated routes may also be hazardous. Icy patches are possible, particularly during tomorrow morning’s peak travel time when road surface temperatures will still be below freezing, so we would encourage everyone to please take extra care if you are heading out on local roads, footways and cycleways.”

The weather is expected to remain cold through to Friday.

Please remember the following advice:

• Never assume a road has been salted. Remember that showers or rain will wash salt off roads leaving them prone to ice, and in extreme cold even salting will not stop ice from forming;
• Allow additional time for your journey;
• Reduce your speed and leave more space between you and the vehicle in front;
• Drive with care and according to the conditions;
• If you have vulnerable or elderly neighbours, think about how they could possibly be helped through the cold spell;
• Try to maintain indoor temperatures to at least 18C, particularly if you are not mobile, have long-term illness or are 65 or over. NHS Choices has more information on staying healthy during cold weather;
• Listen to local radio for updates on current weather conditions and ensure you are stocked with food and medications.

For more information and travel advice visit our winter travel webpages or for updates follow @DevonAlert on Twitter and Facebook.