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Don’t Panic – It Might Snow.

Don’t Panic – It Might Snow.

At the time of writing this it is early January 2013. The weather in England has been relatively mild and benign (Scotland haven’t fared quite so well but, hey, they wanted independence). Unfortunately for us, we are told – and by the time you read this you may already know – that the weather is going to become much colder and there is a chance of…snow!

You’d think, wouldn’t you, that in a mixed climate like ours we’d be used to bad weather. Sadly this never seems to be the case. As soon as that attractive blonde lady on TV mentions the dreaded S word, the floodgates of doom open and a torrent of dire warnings is spread across all media. That which cannot be named causes national anxiety just at its mention.

In 21st Century Britain, it takes only a few centimetres of s**w to bring everything to a grinding halt. Trains are frozen to the lines and passengers have to route march down the side of the track; shops run out of stock, the Prime Minister flies to Chamonix for a little light skiing, cars freeze up for want of servicing and the rest of us manage as best we can.

Meanwhile, again at the time of writing, whilst we are all looking fearfully out of the window at the sky, some 20,000 people have driven through s**w to a remote ski-jumping location in Zakopane, Poland for an event that always turns into a party. Scandinavians – who have a penchant for running naked into the white stuff and beating themselves with birch twigs – laugh in the face of ten foot drifts and, although they also suffer disruption, cope better with the problems than we do.

This is primarily because, like boy scouts, they are better prepared. We have a history in this country of not being prepared, well, for anything really because preparedness costs money. Everything in the UK comes down to a cost benefit analysis. This is probably because our weather is never that bad, but things can change as the many people who have been flooded in the last six months will be pleased to tell you.

So if nothing is to be done and you are basically on your own then it’s time for a bit of self-reliance. Many European countries (but not Belgium who are as bad as we are) now require drivers to fit winter tyres from a given date. This is a cost to drivers unquestionably, but these tyres have a proven benefit when the white precipitation comes. At the very least motorists should carry s**w chains or the cheaper s**w boots for emergency use. It is also essential to ensure that the coolant is correctly topped up to avoid freezing. Some people go as far as to carry a safety kit in case they become stranded. It’s a thought, especially if kids are involved.

So when the weather forecasters predict the worst and the more excitable newspapers tell us about the impending disaster that’s about to unfold remember the words of the immortal Corporal Jones – ‘Don’t panic!’

This post was written by:

- who has written 474 posts on Motor Blogger.

Geoff is a freelance writer and photographer.

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bG9nZ2VyX0xvZ28uanBnIjtpOjI7czo3MzoiaHR0cDovL21vdG9yYmxvZ2dlci5jby51ay93cC1jb250ZW50L3dvb191cGxvYWRzLzMtTW90b3JfQmxvZ2dlcl9Mb2dvLnBuZyI7fTwvbGk+PGxpPjxzdHJvbmc+d29vX3ZpZGVvX2NhdGVnb3J5PC9zdHJvbmc+IC0gQXV0byBOZXdzPC9saT48L3VsPg==