Snow and ice lead to school closures and traffic problems

The north west epxerienced the heaviest snow fall of the winter overnight.
The north west epxerienced the heaviest snow fall of the winter overnight.

People across the north west awoke to a blanket of snow today, which has led to school closures and treacherous conditions on roads throughout the region.

In Inishowen, there are cars abandoned on the main Carndonagh to Buncrana Mountain road, with reports of vehicles getting into difficulties across the northern half of the peninsula, while some morning bus services to Derry and Letterkenny were cancelled.

Rush hour traffic was also moving slowly across Derry following the heaviest snowfall of the winter.

Creggan Hill in Derry has been described as dangerous this morning, with reports of cars getting stuck trying to negotiate their way up this road.

Traffic Watch NI has advised motorists: “Further overnight snow showers particularly across Northern and Western regions has brought accummulations of up to 8cm and as much as 15cm across some routes.

“Salting has been continuous throughout. Road users are advised to exercise caution when travelling, particularly when driving on untreated roads.”

And it looks like there could be more to come, if forecasts prove correct.

While some local schools are off today due to the mid-term break, some schools across Counties Derry, Donegal and Tyrone have been forced to close at short notice due to the adverse weather, while others remain open.

Schools closed confirmed so far include:

*St Eithne’s Primary School, Springtown Road

*Chapel Road Primary School, Knockdarra Park

*Greenhaw Primary School, Derry

*Model Primary School, Derry

*St Canice’s Primary School, Feeny

*Rossmar School, Ballyquin Road,

*New Beginnings Preschool, Burnfoot

*Ballougry Primary School, Mullenan Road,

*Ashlea Primary School, Plumbridge Road,

*St Eugene’s Primary School, Victoria Bridge, 58 Fyfin Road

*St Patrick’s Primary School Newtownstewart

Met Eireann has forecast further scattered wintry showers the morning but said these will die out in the afternoon.

A spokesperson said: “Cloud will build from the west towards evening, bringing rain to western areas. Highest temperatures of 4 to 6 degrees. Moderate southwesterly winds will back southerly and increase fresh to strong and gusty.

“The rain in the west will move eastwards tonight, turning heavy and falling as sleet and snow, especially on higher ground.

“Southerly winds will be strong and gusty, reaching gale force on coasts early in the night. A clearance to wintry showers will follow later and winds will veer northwesterly and ease. Lowest temperatures of -2 to +1 degrees.”