Britain is preparing for the onset of the second big freeze with precautions being taken to prevent or at least alleviate travel chaos.
As the mercury dropped to below freezing point overnight and with icy conditions expected to follow in the north of the UK, airports, rail firms and breakdown services said they are preparing extra snow rescue teams.
Meteorologists are predicting snow showers in Scotland and coastal areas throughout the day, with the whole of Britain predicted to have to cope with bitter temperatures and snow of up to 15cm (16in) in the coming week.
Julian Mayes, senior forecaster atMeteoGroup, the weather division of the Press Association, said on Thursday: "We're basically looking at potential icy conditions spreading down from the north so the emphasis is on icy roads following rain.
"Tonight will end up very cold with snow showers that will affect particularly north Scotland and western coasts.
"What we're going to find on Friday is these snow showers begin to move eastwards. Going into Saturday morning, a larger area of snow is going to develop and begin to move east."
He added that it will be snowing in most parts of the country by the early hours of Saturday.
"Next week, it will stay cold with a further risk of snow in places," he warned.
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