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Edinburgh buried beneath early snow

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Page last updated: 1st Dec 2010 - 12:09 PM

The falling snow is causing the usual problems for the UK – closed schools numbering in the hundreds, an outpouring of ‘wintry scene’ photographs on news websites, chiefly involving family pets standing jaw-deep in snow, and the temporary closure of Britain’s many airports.

Perhaps the first airport to succumb to the weather was Jersey, which was closed for several hours at the weekend, after a lightning strike put radar equipment out of commission on Saturday, and then heavy snow blanketed the Channel Island on Sunday.

Newcastle, Cardiff, Durham, Leeds, Doncaster, and Luton airports have also reported problems, with the latter hub braced for increasingly severe weather from late on Tuesday evening.

However, Edinburgh Airport appears to have been hit the hardest by the falling snow. Bosses pulled the plug on flights on Monday evening for the second time in 24 hours, prompting tens of delays, and forcing many travellers to sleep on the cold terminal floor.

Edinburgh reopened at 0330 on Tuesday morning, before being closed once again at 0600. The airport has not reported any further problems since 1200, when snowploughs scrubbed the runway clean of snow.

The BBC News website reports that only a few planes were able to take off or land at Edinburgh Airport on Sunday and Monday, which goes someway to demonstrating the severity of recent wintry weather in Scotland.

Regular updates are being posted on the airport's official website, but all passengers are advised to contact their airline before leaving their homes, especially if more snow is falling.

Speaking earlier, a passenger at Edinburgh Airport noted serious disruption to normal services - “there were passengers asking taxi drivers if they would take them all the way to London,” the unfortunate flyer, whose flight to Orkney had been cancelled, said. “It was chaos.” The same passenger also observed “hundreds of people” queuing for buses at the airport.

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