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February 09, 2009

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Nick B.

So, the Brits are having a difficult time with a bit of snow.
What's our excuse?

Crash Corrigan

I lived in North Devon UK through the winter of '76 and I've never witnessed snow like that since, and I first lived in Manitoba here! The snow not only covered the front door, but if you opened the upstairs window you could touch the top of the drift. My sister, who was expecting at the time was airlifted by helicopter to hospital, and I spent the next 3-4 weeks digging 100s of dead sheep and cows out of farmers' fields (the animals took shelter by the hedgerows and got themselves buried). We dug them out and carried them away by the tractor trailer load! Some farmers lost their entire stock of animals. The government was in such a panic that they put out over the radio, "If anyone owns a backhoe or front-end loader, get out on the roads and bill us yours hours". It took about a month to get back to normal.

This freak snow storm stuck Devon shortly after a similar one hit Scotland. The devastation to farmers was horrific and because of the Scottish storm, there was no government funds left to help the Devon farmers. Afterwards, the local government purchased some serious N. American snow moving equipment for the county of Devon. Sadly, other parts of the UK never felt the need for that. Hence, the problems you see now. I guess you can't always be prepared for everything!

John Betmanis

Here's what it looked like:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/26361775@N02/sets/72157613518270205/


Just our average winter, if you ask me. And Jim's right about the "tyres". Check out the taxi.

Greg H

Glad to hear you made it home, Jim.

As for snow in London, it sounds similar to Vancouver. The amount we get here is minimal by Ontario/Quebec standards, but there are factors that make the effect much worse:

First, driver experience in snow is very low. Second, nearly no one has proper snow tires. Third, there isn't enough snow removal equipment to clear any of the side roads.

A "daily snowfall" in Ontario is a school closing event here, which always make me chuckle.

Del

We got back from our first trip to England/Scotland, and luckily we missed the "big" storm. I think the Brits are like Vancouverites, they freak-out at the sign of ice & snow, even if it's in amounts that we in the Hinterland regard as not even worth mentioning. With Global warming, they may have to get used to more snow every winter, ehhhh? Maybe even buy some all-season tires? Forget chains, they come loose and cause damage.

Regards from Del in Edmonton

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