Transport review after snow chaos

The Transport Secretary has announced an urgent review of how the UK's transport systems have coped during the big freeze, following days of disruption for motorists.

Amid mounting criticism of efforts to keep Britain moving during the cold spell, Philip Hammond said the performance of transport operators would be examined.

He said: "We took urgent action during the summer which means we're better prepared for severe weather than last year - a national strategic salt reserve exists for the first time.

"But I share the frustration of the travelling public and we need to be sure that we are doing everything possible to keep Britain moving."

He added: "Complacency is not an option. There are lessons to be learned from our performance in every bout of bad weather and it is important that we learn those now.

"Unfortunately, in extreme weather conditions some disruption is inevitable but there is no excuse for poor communication with passengers and motorists."

Major delays were expected on the roads and railways on Thursday, as forecasters predicted up to 20cm (8in) of fresh snowfall in the east of England. London and the South East were also braced for more blizzards.

Two of the UK's main airports - Edinburgh and London Gatwick - remained closed due to the bad weather.

Despite temperatures across the UK struggling to break zero, experts offered some respite, predicting that the wintry weather would ease off slightly on Friday.

Copyright © Press Association 2010