With the Met Office having issued a yellow warning for snow and ice in the county for Sunday, Devon County Council’s 37 frontline gritters are treating around 2,000 miles of the county’s main routes.

The weather warning is in place for most of Sunday and covers a large proportion of North Devon.

Isolated snow flurries are expected on Saturday afternoon, but overnight on Saturday road surface temperatures are set to tumble below freezing and from the early hours of Sunday the forecast is for up to 5cm of snow to be widespread.

There is a possibility of greater amounts of snow on higher ground.

The county council is warning that driving conditions could be difficult in some parts of the county on Sunday and into Monday morning as well.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, DCC cabinet member for highway management, said: “We’ve seen already this winter how disruptive the snow can be and how rapidly conditions can change on our roads.

“Our gritting teams are doing everything possible to ensure that our main salting routes are treated before the temperatures drop below zero.

“With the recent rainfall we’ve had, there is a lot of run off on some roads which could wash any salt away and freeze so please take extra care.

“Road surface temperatures are expected to be even lower on Sunday night into Monday so there could be disruption, particularly on higher ground.

“While the forecast suggests that the amount of snow might not be as much as we had at the start of the month, we would urge people to please take normal winter precautions and ensure you have essential kit with you.

“Our advice is to avoid travelling at night on Saturday and Sunday if at all possible, and if the snow does arrive as forecast and you don’t need to travel then please avoid putting yourself at risk.”

Highways England network operations manager Rob Llewellyn said: “With rain landing on extremely cold ground, and a forecast of snow, particularly for Sunday, we’re encouraging drivers to check the latest weather and travel conditions before setting off on journeys.

“We are doing everything possible to prepare for more severe weather.

Our gritters are out treating our routes around the clock but it is still important to drive to the conditions when snow and ice is forecast.

“Drivers are also encouraged to consider whether their journey can be delayed.”

A Devon and Cornwall Police spokesman said: “We advise the public to drive to conditions of the road, slow down, keep your distance and keep an eye on weather reports.”

People should also be aware that strong easterly winds, particularly in coastal areas, could have the potential to cause further erosion and possible disruption on local roads.

So far this winter, Devon County Council has used around 17,500 tonnes of salt, but still has more than 8,000 tonnes in stock.