Monday, January 21, 2013
Drivers have been urged to take extra care on Norfolk’s roads, although police say there are no major issues around the county.
Norfolk police were called to about 25 crashes on Norfolk’s roads today and, although conditions were much improved on major roads, some back roads are still covered in ice and compact snow.
Light snow continued to fall in parts of the county as the night wore on, including in Norwich.
Norfolk police warned that some roads remained icy and urged people to continue to drive with care.
Among the earlier accidents were:
Surlingham: At 7.20am at Walnut Hill in Surlingham a car went off the road into a ditch. One man was taken to the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital.
East Walton: Shortly before 8.30am on the B1153 there was a four-vehicle crash. One person suffered an arm injury.
Norwich: Just before 9am on Earlham Green Lane there was a collision involving a car and pedestrian. Nobody was believed to have been injured.
Gorleston: At about 9.30am there was a crash involving a lorry and a car. One person suffered a minor knock to the head and a sore neck.
Taverham: At about 10.20am at white Mercedes van went into a tree on the A1067 near the shooting school. One person suffered a minor head injury.
Emneth: Just after 3pm, there was a crash on Outwell Road at Emneth. Fire crews from Outwell, Wisbech and Downham Market went to the scene and released a casualty from their vehicle. Diversions were put in place before the road re-opened at about 6pm. Meanwhile the county’s gritting team has been continuing their work to keep the county’s road network running. A spokesman said the roads were “responding well” to the salt which had been put down.
He said the gritting teams did three runs on the top priority roads earlier today before moving onto lower priority roads. He said they would be going out again this evening.
Farmers have been mobilised to clear minor roads in parts of the county, and the council’s gritting fleet is also expected to move on to plough and treat lower priority (priority three) roads during the afternoon. They will then return to the main network of just over 2,000 miles (priority one and two) during the evening and overnight, when there is a risk of snow showers adding up to 3cms to the lying snow.
Nick Tupper, highway maintenance manager for Norfolk County Council, said: “Although we have had more snow, temperatures have crept up closer to freezing today and the enormous effort put in to treat the priority network is starting to pay dividends. Most of our A and B roads are through to the asphalt, and we will be continuing treatment to maintain that improvement.
“We are very grateful for the messages of support we have received because we also hear complaints about people ‘not seeing a gritter’. That’s perhaps not surprising, given the length of road covered and the amount of work that’s carried out overnight. Last night, for example, our crews were constantly in action right through the snow. By this morning Norfolk’s priority roads had been treated several times - including two runs after midnight - before most people ventured out. Behind the scenes, fitters and mechanics have been doing a great job keeping our gritting fleet on the road.
“As resources become available we will be back out re-filling grit bins and treating high priority pedestrian areas. We are grateful for support from the City, Borough and district councils who have helped where they can.
“Since the cold weather set in on 13 January we have notched up 40 actions - that’s well over 80,000 miles of total gritting, and over 12,500 tonnes of road salt. Overall we have been out 81 times so far this winter compared with around 100 for the whole of last winter, with a lot of this winter still to go. We are continuing to be restocked at about 1,000 tonnes a day, so salt supplies are holding up well and there is no shortage.”
More than 280 Norfolk schools were closed today, while Norwich International Airport was shut until about 10.30am. KL1515 from Amsterdam, due to land at 9.10pm today was cancelled due to weather conditions in Amsterdam, while the BE6878, due to arrive from Manchester at 8.45pm was also cancelled because of a technical problem.
The KL1502 tomorrow, due to leave Norwich at 6.30am has also been cancelled because of the bad weather in Amsterdam.
First Buses continued to suffer delays and disruption, operating on main roads only. Anglian Buses said it expected the majority of services to run as normal tomorrow.
Train operator Greater Anglia said the railways were running generally well, but there were some minor delays.
Frozen pipes forced the closure of nine of Norfolk’s recycling centres: Bergh Apton, Dereham, Docking, Heacham, Mayton Wood, Morningthorpe, Snetterton, Wells, Wereham.
Eleven remained open: Ashill, Caister, Hempton, Ketteringham, Kings Lynn, Mile Cross, Thetford, Sheringham, Strumpshaw, Worstead, Wymondham.
Waste and recycling collections in Norwich continued to be suspended today due to the ice and snow.
A Norwich City Council spokesman said: “Please leave your wheelie bins out for collection on your normal collection day and we will empty your bin as soon as it is safe to do so.
“We were unable to complete all collections in the city last week due to the adverse weather. So please bring unemptied bins back into your properties and, where possible, we will empty your bins on the next scheduled collection day.
“The situation continues to be monitored on a daily basis. Normal collections will resume as soon as possible, at which time crews will to do all they can to deal with the backlog.
“You should also be aware that brown (garden waste) bin collections in Norwich are cancelled this week due to the snow. If your garden waste bin has not been emptied as expected, please leave it out on the next due collection day. The bulky item collection service has been suspended until next week.
“For anyone who has ordered a replacement bin, please note deliveries will not commence until next week.”
People are also urged to make access to their bins as easy as possible for the collecting team.
The spokesman said: “Severe weather is the most common reason for having to make changes to our collection arrangements.
“Snowfall and icy conditions can make the roads and especially the pavements hazardous or difficult for our crews to access your property to collect your bins.
“Please help to make access as easy as possible during periods of severe weather by: parking on the same side of the road as neighbouring cars where possible; avoiding parking opposite junctions; and making sure your bin is at your usual collection point by 7am on the morning your collection is due.
“Please ensure your bin(s) are visible and easy to access. We apologise for the inconvenience caused.”
And the blanket of snow and treacherous roads have made it difficult for postal workers. Spokeswoman Morag Turnbull said: “We apologise to customers who are experiencing delays to their deliveries in the Norwich area as a result of the severe winter weather conditions there.
A range of measures have been put in place to ensure deliveries reach people as quickly as possible. We are doing our utmost to ensure continued deliveries but it may not be possible to do so everywhere because of the weather.”