The Met Office upgraded its earlier warning of “extreme heat” to “extreme snow” as the UK heatwave suddenly turned for the worse north of the border, with dozens already feared dead.
Some parts of Aberdeenshire were inaccessible by 4pm yesterday as easterly winds from Russia and Scandinavia took their grim toll. Some motorists on the A939 abandoned their vehicles and died at the side of the road within minutes as their internal organs froze.
Most schools have been closed and two-thirds of local authorities have reported that they are out of grit, bringing further chaos to roads. All flights from Glasgow and Edinburgh airports have been cancelled “for at least a month”, according to their spokesmen.
“Some of our planes are still up there, blindly circling, their instruments frozen,” admittted Scottish transport minister Keith Brown. “God help them. God help them all.”
Strong winds gusting up to 85mph brought down power lines and trees yesterday while snow and sleet made driving hazardous on many roads.
SNP leader Alex Salmond said the disparity in weather between Scotland and the rest of the UK – currently enjoying a major heatwave – highlighted the need for his nation to be handed a special Summer Snow allowance by Westminster.
“This just shows how much harder we have it up here – much, much harder. Even North Sea oil can’t save us now.”Tweet