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Saturday, 19 April 2014

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More than 100 road accidents as ice causes problems across Cumbria

Freezing rain has created lethal conditions across Cumbria today.

The A66 was closed between Brough and Scotch Corner after a lorry travelling east jackknifed blocking the carriageway at Stainmore. The road has been reopened.

The M6 and A684 were extremely hazardous and only passable with extreme care. The speed restriction on the M6 has been lifted.

Cumbria police has received reports of more than 100 collisions due to the icy conditions since 5am.

Officers urged motorists to take “extreme caution”, slow down and, if possible, delay journeys.

The force's roads policing unit described roads as ice-rinks. People were also advised to take care when walking on pavements, many of which were frozen.

It was reported that Davison's mini coaches schools runs were cancelled due to ice.

Parents in Longtown, Brampton, Roadhead and Longfield were told to make other arrangements.

Sixteen county schools were closed as a result of the conditions:

  • Grange primary
  • Castle Park primary
  • Kendal Allithwaite primary
  • St Patricks School, Endmoor
  • Vicarage Park Primary, Kendal
  • Asby Endowed, Appleby
  • St Thomas, Kendal
  • Lanercost
  • Beaconside
  • Crosscrake
  • Lindale
  • Low Marton
  • Dean Barwick
  • Crosby Ravensworth
  • Goodly Dale community primary, Windermere
  • Penny Bridge C of E School. This school will also be closed tomorrow (Fri).

In addition, Kendal Nursery School has closed early today. It may be closed tomorrow; a decision will be taken in the morning.

St Mary's School at Windermere will be closed tomorrow (Fri), the county council has confirmed.

Cumbria County Council described it as a 'perfect storm' with rain falling on freezing ground.

Gritting crews worked through the night and this morning treating priority one and two routes and, where possible, non-priority roads and footways. Click here for a map of Cumbria's priority routes.

Although air temperatures were above freezing in many places, ground temperatures remained below zero, causing the rain to freeze on the ground and create patches of black ice.

Conditions are expected to remain hazardous for at least the next 24 hours.

The Met Office has issued an “amber” warning to be prepared for widespread ice.

A spokesman said: “The public should be prepared for extremely hazardous driving conditions, particularly on routes over high ground and where roads are untreated.”

For up to the minute updates on road conditions go to www.cumbria.police.uk/traffic-link-map

What's it like where you are? Tell us here so that we can build up a 'map' of the problem areas...

Have your say

Kevin,
It's happened to me in the past. Driving along the A595 Wigton Road, driving into Carlisle, just before the roundabout at McVities. There's a road on the left, with a downhill gradient, I slowed before the icy side road, saw a car in the side road approaching the junction too fast, I braked on the A595, the other car slid out in front of me, I'd stopped in time. I agree it won't necessarily always work, but you've got to anticipate what may happen and plan for it.

Posted by Darryl on 12 February 2012 at 17:11

Dave: In my experience, the information displayed by motorway dot-matrix signs is wrong in about 90 per cent of cases. It doesn't surprise me that some drivers have paid no attention, especially if their experience is similar to mine. Having said that, the slightest amount of common sense would have told you that 70 mph was far too fast in those conditions. But therein lies the real problem.

Posted by Letterwright on 12 February 2012 at 17:04

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