Police’s winter driving warning

03/12/2011'Drivers battle adverse weather in Oughtibridge, South Yorkshire, as heavy rain and winds hit the county.''rossparry.co.uk / Glen Minikin

03/12/2011'Drivers battle adverse weather in Oughtibridge, South Yorkshire, as heavy rain and winds hit the county.''rossparry.co.uk / Glen Minikin

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MOTORISTS are being urged to take extra care on South Yorkshire’s roads now that wintry showers have started and temperatures have plummeted.

With the first snow of December landing in South Yorkshire yesterday, the county’s Safer Roads Partnership is urging drivers to pay increased attention to winter driving conditions, allowing extra time for journeys and preparing for bad weather.

They are urging drivers to give themselves greater braking distances and to carry a emergency kit in their vehicles, including waterproof jackets, gloves and boots, regardless of how long or short their journey may be.

Station manager Jon Torn, of South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Bad weather and longer dark nights are a danger to all road users, affecting visibility and road conditions.

“Drivers and riders need to be aware there may be black ice or snow on the road and spray from other vehicles makes it harder to see what may be happening ahead. The speed limit is a maximum, not a target and you should always drive at an appropriate speed for the conditions.”

Superintendent Eddie Murphy, of South Yorkshire Police, said “Carrying warm clothing and blankets in your car is essential.

“If you break down you must get out of the vehicle and as far away from the roadside as possible, particularly as there is a higher risk of vehicles skidding off the road.”

The first icy showers hit South Yorkshire yesterday morning with snow falling on higher ground.

The A57 Snake Pass was closed on Sunday night and yesterday saw sleet and torrential rain in Sheffield city centre.

Forecasters said more rain was set to blast South Yorkshire this week – and there would be occasional burst of sleet and wintry showers.

Yesterday’s sleet and snow, which brought some flooding problems to low-lying roads – is unlikely to return but forecasters add that the outlook remains very unsettled with wind and heavy showers, occasionally of hail and sleet on high ground.

Police said the A6102 at Wharncliffe Side between Sheffield and Stocksbridge was ‘badly flooded’ yesterday afternoon although it remained passable.