Ice warning following multiple crashes

Published Monday, 13 January 2014
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A yellow alert has been put in place by the Met Office due to expected icy conditions across Northern Ireland on Monday night and into Tuesday.

Ice warning following multiple crashes
Police are advising motorists to reduce speed and take care. (© Getty)

The warning comes after a treacherous morning on the roads in Northern Ireland on Monday.

Police said they dealt with 42 incidents between 6am and 9am across the region.

The NI Ambulance Service (NIAS) reported attending the scene of 15 road traffic collisions, one of which was fatal, during the same time period.

NIAS spokesman John McPoland told UTV: "Our crews dealt with incidents in Derry, Belfast, Craigavon, Lurgan, Armagh, Killyleagh and Downpatrick - they were everywhere.

"It was an exceptional three hours for us. Normally, in the space of a day, we would expect to deal with maybe 12 or 13 road traffic collisions, so this was a big morning for us."

Both the police and the ambulance service said that the incidents could not be specifically linked directly to the cold weather conditions.

However, black ice is thought to have played a part in the morning's disruption.

During the morning, police urged motorists to exercise caution on roads which were said to be "extremely treacherous" in places.

The Lurgan and Craigavon areas were reported to be among the worst affected, but black ice was also reported in Armagh, Portadown and Newry.

Police reminded motorists that they should stay at a safe distance behind other vehicles and reduce their speed.

According to a Roads Service spokesperson, there was no evidence of frost in the Southern Division at about 3am on Monday morning and temperatures were well above freezing.

"An un-forecast dip in temperatures occurred at around 5-6am in areas of Southern Division, which caused road temperatures to fall below freezing, resulting in the formation of frost and ice on some roads," the spokesperson continued.

"This was compounded by isolated showers which occurred across the area, falling on road surfaces which were close to freezing.

"On becoming aware of the change in road conditions, Roads Service carried out gritting operations in Southern Division from 7am onwards on the parts of the salted network which had been affected."

The warning for further icy conditions will be in place from 5pm on Monday until 10am on Tuesday.

According to the Met Office, road temperatures will fall below freezing overnight, allowing icy stretches to form on untreated surfaces.

EXTERNAL LINKS / CONTACTS
Some travel disruption will be likely and may affect Tuesday morning's rush hour traffic.
© UTV News
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Comments Comments
23 Comments
Realist in Belfast wrote (224 days ago):
All the people moaning about winter tyres being expensive are no doubt driving around on the cheapest Chinese tyres available. Typical Northern Ireland. Everyone driving around in new Audis and BMWs with the cheapest rubbish tyres they can find. Tyres are the only thing connecting the car to the road. Take responsibility for yourself and your families safety and stop expecting the government and councils to do everything for you. If you cant afford to run a car properly, don't drive.
Penny in Antrim wrote (225 days ago):
Folks, if you're going to complain, complain at the right people. DOE has no responsibility for gritting. It's DRD ROADS SERVICE - has been for years!!!! Apart from that, it was clear there was ice on the roads this morning and people were driving like ***** as usual. Everyone knows you should slow down and increase stopping distance between you and the vehicle in front of you - but which of you does this? I had someone pull out directly in front of me from a junction and they lost control on the ice, just because they were trying to make the school bus. It wasn't the ice's fault or DRDs - it was their's. They could've killed me, themselves and their flippin kid for one second's impatience and stupidity! People on the roads need to wise up.
Andrea in Dungannon wrote (225 days ago):
The roads have been a disgrace right from Christmas Eve to now including the M1 and M12 and to Craigavon hospital. Please grit these roads
Long time driver in Carryduff wrote (225 days ago):
Do people want the grit on the road so that they can still fly along at their usual speed? And stay bumper to bumper on the main roads? Travelled to Saintfield last week and applied the two second rule to stay behind the car in front. The FOUR cars in front of me were taking up the same amount of road and couldn't have stopped in time to avoid an collision. SLOW DOWN and STAY BACK.
Orla in Belfast wrote (225 days ago):
No grit on main roads from Newcastle to Ballynahinch/Lisburn this morning either! Not good! What is going on???
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