HEAVY snow hit Devon overnight and has continued in parts of the county this morning.
Driving conditions across Devon are proving difficult in some areas. Devon County Council and Highways Agency gritters were out four times overnight, using more than 1,000 tonnes of salt and they have continued their efforts this morning.
Snow showers are expected to continue on and off throughout the day and gritters will be treating main roads and secondary routes. Teams will also be treating town centres and high streets during the day.
A persistent band of heavy snow has been affecting the A361 North Devon Link Road this morning, but it is passable with care as two gritters have been continuously working on the route.
A gritter was stuck near Bolham earlier, but that has now been cleared and cars are moving. Moortown Cross was also impassable at one stage, but gritters are treating in short sections to keep vehicles moving.
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The emergency response plan for Haldon Hill was in operation in the early hours of the morning.
Spotters from Devon County Council and the Highways Agency were deployed to Haldon and Telegraph Hills and a Forward Control Point was established at Kennford weighbridge between 6am and 8:45am.
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The County Council, Highways Agency and Devon and Cornwall Police have been closely monitoring conditions and Devon County Council gritters have been on a continuous loop on the A380 at Telegraph Hill, while the Highways Agency has been doing the same on the A38 at Haldon Hill to give traffic the best possible chance of keeping moving.
No problems have been reported.
The A30 near Exeter Airport is passable with care, hail has fallen on to snow on the B3260 Exeter Road, Okehampton, and three HGVs are stuck on Folley Cross on the A3079. Ice is also reported on the A381 Totnes at Halwell, on the A375 Sidmouth to Honiton, the A3072 Holsworthy to Hatherleigh, the A3052 Trow Hill and Sidmouth to East Budleigh.
Cars were also reported stopped on the A3052 at Newton Poppleford towards Exeter during rush hour making it impassable, and the B3137 at Withleigh was reported blocked earlier.
Councillor Stuart Hughes, Devon County Council Cabinet Member for Highways and Transportation, said: “There has been some disruption this morning which has been unavoidable because of the heavy snow showers across most of the county. Our teams have been doing everything possible to make sure roads are clear and to keep Devon moving. Roads may be treacherous, and significant problems should be expected off the main salting network. The advice to people is that if your journey today is not essential, then please stay at home.”
A Devon and Cornwall Police spokesman said: “We have been getting reports of some drivers driving too fast for the conditions. We are asking the public to ensure that they take extra care and allow more time for their journeys. If possible the public should consider delaying their journey particularly if their journey is not essential.”
Around 30 schools across the county are reported closed this morning. A number of school bus routes have also been disrupted, including those in Holsworthy, Kingsbridge, Newton Abbot and East Devon. A full list of route delays and cancellations and schools closures can be found by logging on to www.devonschoolclosures.info/