A NUMBER of schools in Lancashire were closed yesterday as snow covered the region.
Five primary schools were closed in Lancaster and two were closed in Chorley while closures also occured in Hyndburn, Pendle, Rossendale and Ormskirk.
The Highways Agency, which manages motorways and major A roads in England, has issued an amber alert for the weekend.
Road users across the region are being advised to check the weather forecast and road conditions before travelling as heavy rain is expected to turn to snow, bringing blizzard conditions in some areas.
Steve Crosthwaite, head of the Agency’s National Traffic Operations Centre said: “Winter certainly isn’t over yet and there’s not been much rest for our gritting fleet.
“We are doing everything we can to ensure our roads are affected as little as possible by the adverse weather but we would urge road users to play their part by checking weather forecasts and traffic conditions before they set out and to drive with extra care.”
And the county’s gritters will be out in force to ensure roads will be clear.
County Councillor Tim Ashton, Cabinet member for highways and transport, said: “We’re as well prepared as we’ve ever been thanks to experience gained from recent severe winters and our gritting crews will be working around the clock if needed to keep Lancashire moving.
“As always our top priority in the event of significant snow will be to focus at first on ploughing and salting the network of A and B roads which link towns, villages, and vital infrastructure such as train stations and hospitals.
A spokesperson for Lancashire County Council stated: “We started gritting at half past six on Thursday night then did a inspection at half past three the following morning.
“ A full grit was carried out at 5am on Friday and continued to patrol since 11am around Preston, Chorley and West Lancashire.
“West Lancashire was the worst hit area.”
As yet there has been little disruption to traffic but as the weather worsens over the weekend, hold-ups are expected as people travel up and down the county.