The first day of spring 1 st March 2018 saw some of the most treacherous driving conditions the UK had seen for years. This was due to a prolonged spell of extreme weather dubbed “The Beast From The East.” Many roads became impassable when over 25 centimeters of snow fell across large areas including Northumberland. Freezing temperatures and high winds exasperated already extremely hazardous driving conditions.
The extreme weather conditions brought a huge challenge for many small businesses across the UK, not least those in Newcastle and Northumberland. The weather brought towns and cities to a standstill. Supplies couldn’t get through and many services couldn’t operate. Schools closed across the region and local communities pulled together to help people trapped in their vehicles and houses. People took food and hot drinks to motorists who were stuck for hours on the roads. In Rothbury, the mountain rescue team helped distribute hot meals to the elderly who couldn’t leave their homes.
The news highlighted stories of doctors and nurses who had walked miles to work or camped overnight in hospitals to tend the sick. Lots of people did what they could to help in difficult situations.
Connection Express provides a time critical delivery service. We collect blood samples from local GP’s and deliver them to the labs for testing. The snowy conditions were a challenge. We faced similar conditions in 2010 when couriers equipped with spades had to dig themselves out of the snow to keep on the move. We were well warned about the recent snowy onslaught. With a little forward planning which involved management being out on the road at key points, we managed to call at every GP surgery on our routes and make sure that samples reached the appropriate laboratory where they could be tested.
“Our vehicles are equipped with snow tyres which helped to keep us moving on the snowy roads. We avoided driving on the side streets where the snow was deepest. Instead, we parked and went on foot to reach the GP surgeries. The service was slower than usual but we got to every surgery and all the samples we collected were delivered to the relevant laboratory. It was a true team effort.”
Traffic Consultant Connection Express.
Supporting your local businesses can make a big difference. We all do our bit for the local economy. Small businesses might be small but they can do big things!