Snow: Police report people taking advice

SUSSEX Police are reporting that people seem to be heeding advice not to travel unless absolutely necessary and with the heaviest snowfall occurring overnight the number of weather-related and general calls has been fairly low.

Ch Supt Paul Morrison, head of Operations, said: “It looks as though people have learned from their experiences last year and are being really sensible about making decisions to travel.

“I should like to pay tribute to those whose journeys really are essential, for their fortitude and resolution in getting themselves to their work places, not least one of our own call handling staff who hiked across the Downs from Peacehaven to Lewes this morning.

“I’m also very grateful to volunteers from Sussex Search and Rescue and NHW Search who are turning out in their four-wheel drive vehicles to assist us in getting officers to their work places.

“While a number of our officers and staff aren’t working from their usual base, the vast majority of them are reporting for duty as normal at locations across the county and we are responding to 999 calls as usual. We will also endeavour to conduct other business as normal, but we would ask that people to ensure that their 999 calls are genuine emergencies and consider if their non-emergency query might wait a couple of days or so until the bad weather eases.”

In keeping with the ‘business as usual’ ethos of the police service, some Sussex residents may spot some unfamiliar uniforms on the streets as officers from neighbouring forces, including the Metropolitan Police, who live in Sussex report locally for duty as they are unable to get to their usual stations.

Between 8pm on Wednesday (December 1) and 8am today, there were 50 calls that would appear directly attributable to the weather and were evenly spread across the county. They related to a number of low speed road traffic collisions, many involving single vehicles that just slid off the road, abandoned and stuck vehicles, trees down and a small number of anti-social snow-balling incidents earlier on in the evening.

There were a few minor injuries as a result of the road traffic collisions.