City’s arterial routes clear

The snow and ice yesterday caused misery for thousands of commuters in Londonderry.

Despite more blizzard-like conditions last night, the Roads Service have pulled out all the stops overnight to ensure that routes are open.

Glendermott Road in the Waterside was badly affected by the adverse weather conditions yesterday, but this morning the road, which is one of the main arterial routes into and out of the city, was free-flowing.

Side roads, however, remain treacherous, particularly the steep roads off Spencer Road and with more snow forecast for today (Wednesday), as well as Friday and Saturday, the Police are warning motorists to drive with care.

To help and advise motorists they have produced a checklist for those venturing out in vehicles, below.

* Slow down and leave plenty of room to stop. You should allow at least three times more space than usual between you and the car in front of you

* Brake gently to avoid skidding. If your wheels start to lock, ease off the brakes

* Turn on your lights to increase your visibility to other motorists and always clear all ice and snow off the car windows before setting out

* Drive slowly on snow in the highest gear possible.

* Never overtake snowploughs or gritting lorries. The drivers have limited visibility, and you’re likely to find the road in front of them worse than the road behind

* Do not assume your vehicle can handle all conditions. Even four-wheel drive vehicles can encounter trouble on winter roads.

* Police would also advise for anyone unlucky enough to get stuck in snow:

* Do not spin your wheels. This will only dig you in deeper. Turn your wheels from side to side a few times to push snow out of the way.

* Use a light touch on the accelerator to ease your car out.

* Use a shovel to clear snow away from the wheels and the underside of the car.

* Pour sand, gravel or salt in the path of the wheels – or even your foot mats - to help get traction.

* If you must leave your car, arrange to have it recovered as soon as possible. If you think it is in a place that may pose a danger to other road users, call the police to let them know.