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Four people die in road accidents as snow sweeps across UK

Fatal incidents in Lincolnshire and Cambridgeshire as wintry weather causes disruption
Four people have been killed in crashes in Lincolnshire and Cambridgeshire on Tuesday as wintry conditions continued across Britain.
Snowfall made driving conditions treacherous in many parts of Britain, disrupted rail and air transport networks and forced hundreds of schools to close. More snow is forecast for the rest of the week.
Lincolnshire police appealed for witnesses to contact them about the incident, which involved a blue Renault Clio and a white Scania lorry on the A15 shortly after 6am.
The crash was one of 20 within three hours on Lincolnshire’s roads, including one involving a school bus with 45 pupils on board, police said. The children were unharmed after their bus collided with a car and veered off the road near Deeping St James.
Officers in Cambridgeshire said another man had died in a crash, which had involved three vehicles on the A47 near Peterborough shortly before 10am.
Essex police said one person was injured in a 17-car pile-up on the A120 between Colchester and Elmstead Market.
About 500 homes in Newcastle were left without power after a fire on Ponteland Road in Cowgate disrupted power supplies.
Crews had to turn off the supply to repair the damaged cables, leaving homes without heating and prompting police to declare a major incident.
A reception centre for affected residents has been set up at a nearby Morrisons supermarket.
At least 24 people have died in mainland Europe in the past four days as freezing temperatures have brought snow as far south as the Mediterranean islands of Corsica and Capri.
Polish police said five people had died after temperatures fell as low as -22C, bringing to 53 the number of Polish deaths from freezing this winter. Three deaths were reported in Romania.
Yellow warnings for snow remained in place in the UK on Tuesday, the Met Office said, and more were issued for later in the week covering parts of Scotland, northern England, south-west England and Wales.
Scotland’s transport minister, Humza Yousaf, said amber alerts in Scotland for snow and freezing winds from the early hours of Wednesday could be changed to red for extreme weather in some areas.
The Met Office said several centimetres of snow fell in some parts of the UK on Monday night and Tuesday morning, including in Newcastle and Northumberland. The lowest overnight temperature of -8.9C was recorded in Farnborough, Hampshire.
Trains were affected by the snowfall, with cancellations and disruptions on lines. Southeastern, which operates in Kent, cancelled dozens of services, including several to London’s St Pancras, Victoria and Cannon Street stations. Southern and Great Northern services were also affected.
Services on c2c, Greater Anglia, London Overground, South Western Railway, Southeastern, Stansted Express and TfL Rail had been affected and disruption could continue on Wednesday and Thursday, Network Rail said.
Hundreds of schools across the UK have been closed, including nearly 350 in Kent and more than 220 in Wales.
British Airways cancelled dozens of flights from Heathrow airport and said it was preparing for adverse weather until Friday, with some short-haul and domestic flights likely to be affected. EasyJet also said some flights could be delayed or cancelled.
“There will also be further disruption throughout the day as these showers become widespread across the country,” said Emma Sillitoe, a Met office meteorologist. Forecasters had predicted 5cm to 10cm of snow in most areas of the UK.
The Met Office forecaster Frank Saunders said parts of the UK could have their coldest spell of weather since at least 2013, and possibly since 1991. It was expected temperatures could dip as low as -15C by midweek where there was snow on the ground, close to temperatures forecast for parts of northern Norway and Iceland.

Forecasters predicted that another weather system, Storm Emma, would bring blizzards, gales and sleet later in the week as that storm met the chilly “beast from the east”. The storm, named by the Portuguese met service, is expected to move north through Europe and reach the UK on Thursday and Friday. It could cause significant disruption, including power cuts and transport delays.