Beast from the East: Scots warned to stay at home as disruptive snow predicted

Alasdair Clark

Scots have been warned to stay at home later this week as forecasters predict snow chaos from Siberia

DISRUPTIVE snow is predicted to wreak havoc on the East of Scotland this week as storm Emma, nicknamed the Beast of the East, looks set to drop temperatures to some of the coldest the UK has seen, raising concerns about people sleeping rough on Scotland’s streets.

The Met Office explained that very cold air from northern Scandinavia and the northwest of Russia will cross the UK and combine with easterly winds to make temperatures feel several degrees colder than thermometers show. 

The wind chill, which could make parts of the UK feel as cold as minus 15C, will create temperatures as cold as in Iceland.

Concern for homeless people sleeping on the streets has been raised after Scottish Government statistics showed a two per cent increase in homeless applications between April and September 2017.  

The BBC reported that in Brussels homeless people who refuse shelter during the cold snap will be detained “in cases of absolute necessity”. 

The STV weather presenter Sean Batty advised people who could to work from home on Wednesday and Thursday to do so as lower parts of Scotland could see up to 20cm of snow and higher areas up to 40cm. 

A yellow severe weather warning has been put in place, meaning the forecast has a medium likelihood of being correct and will have a high impact. 

Deputy First Minister John Swinney has already chaired a meeting of the Scottish Government’s resilience team to ensure preparations are in place to deal with the effects of the predicted weather. 

Police Scotland have said they expect a high level of disruption on the roads, and transport minister Humza Yousaf warned of delays and disruption to journeys this week: “The weather warnings from the Met Office mean that we’re facing an acute weather challenge over the coming days.

“We’re likely to see significant disruption to the transport network”. Transport Minister Humza Yousaf

“We’re likely to see significant disruption to the transport network, particularly in the areas affected by the amber warning.

“Whilst the worst of the weather is predicted to impact the east of Scotland, the rest of the country is also likely to face wintry conditions, so I’d ask travellers to consider if they need to make their journeys during the amber warning periods.”

If you see someone sleeping on the streets, you can help by using Shelter Scotland’s online tool to find the contact details for the local emergency housing team who can provide assistance to anyone on the streets.

Picture courtesy of Xlibber 

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