Heavy snow forecast this afternoon

Early snow'Snow on the Esplanade in Scarborough'Picture by Neil Silk  130202a'14/01/13
Early snow'Snow on the Esplanade in Scarborough'Picture by Neil Silk 130202a'14/01/13
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Scarborough awoke this morning to the first snowfall of the predicted ‘big chill’.

While a light blanket covered areas through the night, snow has just begun to fall once again in Scarborough’s town centre.

Early snow'Snow by the river in West Ayton'Picture by Neil Silk  130202b'14/01/13

Early snow'Snow by the river in West Ayton'Picture by Neil Silk 130202b'14/01/13

So far services remain unaffected, however heavier snow is forecast this afternoon, with 10cm expected to fall over seven hours.

The Met Office has issued an amber “be prepared” warning for snow disruption in north-east England, Yorkshire and Humber, and the East Midlands, with temperatures expected to drop to around -4C or minus -5C across other parts of northern and eastern England.

The Met Office also issued a cold weather alert, warning of a 90 per cent probability of severe cold weather or icy conditions until Friday in parts of England.

The cold spell is being caused by an abrupt jump in temperatures high in the stratosphere, which can bring snow, forecasters explained.

It is set to continue throughout Tuesday and Wednesday, with snow forecast for eastern England and Scotland on those days.

Strengthening winds later in the week will make it feeler colder, the Met Office said.

In light of the snow fall Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust is urging members of the public to take extra care and use the 999 service wisely by only calling 999 when it is obvious that someone has a serious or life-threatening illness or injury.

David Williams, Deputy Director of Operations at Yorkshire Ambulance Service, said the Trust has plans in place to ensure they continue to provide the very best service to patients in the event of any adverse weather.

He said: “We have the situation under constant review will be making every effort to get to patients as quickly, and as safely, as possible despite any difficult conditions we encounter.

“Our staff will be working extremely hard to get to local people who call upon us for help but understandably hazardous driving conditions may lead to extended drive-times meaning it might take us a little longer than normal to reach patients in the worst hit areas.

“As snow and ice traditionally results in an increase in 999 calls, particularly for weather-related incidents such as road traffic collisions, falls and breathing difficulties, we ask that people only call 999 in a life-threatening situation to help us concentrate our resources on those who need us most.”

For advice and treatment for non-emergencies, people should consider options such as a visit to a local pharmacist or GP surgery, a call to NHS Direct or a visit to a walk-in centre.