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December Severe Cold Spell Thread

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Author Topic: December Severe Cold Spell Thread  (Read 1974 times)
martinastro
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« Reply #60 on: December 19, 2010, 06:21:07 pm »

Fantastic shots Paul, your comment about the 10 yards says it all. I like that block of snow sitting on the table  Smiley

Conor, love those images, the blood temp just drops when I look at them. No 2 is fantastic and really sums up this entire Winter so far in a single image  Smiley

Thundersnow/thunderstorms last night over E N. Ireland, one guy reported 11 flashes of lightning and 10" of snow from the event. I could see the lightning from Maghera and it looked incredible. Amazing soft rime ice/hoar frost type stuff today outside Maghera, first dramatic forms I have seen so far which was cool. There was a huge icicle hanging below the bridge and the Grillagh river is partially frozen over. It's - 8 or lower now already and it will drop even more later.

Must check out Joe's update forecast - this Winter is already epic!
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« Reply #61 on: December 20, 2010, 02:28:58 pm »

Looks like JohnC has had a good dumping of snow this morning, and now just started here for me - possibly a couple of hours, so depending on how heavy it is could be fun, especially seeing as the rush hour should have started by the time it's settled on the main routes...  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #62 on: December 20, 2010, 04:34:14 pm »

"Record low" here in Portballintrae -10.9C this morning - has been between -6C and -8C most of the day. Very unusual this close to the coast.
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« Reply #63 on: December 20, 2010, 06:04:01 pm »

Hi guys,
I have seen some reports on TV about the weather conditions in the UK. Like your reports too. It seems to me that the weather you had there in NI a few days ago was very similar to what I have experienced last January.  Smiley
This December in Poltava is mild, with not much snow (8cm) and temperatures mostly within range of -8...+2C. The only uncomfortable thing is a big amount of ice (a few occurences of freezing rain and consequtive melting/freezing). My car had also stood still for a few days, covered with a layer of snow/ice which I couldn't easily remove.
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« Reply #64 on: December 21, 2010, 08:20:01 am »

-10C again despite considerable cloud cover. No signs whatsoever of any gritting round here, even on main roads, since Thursday.
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« Reply #65 on: December 21, 2010, 10:01:54 am »

The snow that I had yesterday has dropped another 2" on top of the 8" that's already there.  Just been out to clear it off the car and drive again - we need to get out to the supermarket later!  Went to the shed to get another bag of grit out (bulk buying in the summer when cheap Wink ) and it is frozen cake solid in one big lump!  Had to bash it apart with the shovel.  A quick check of my unfavbourably placed thermometer reveals -12c, which is as cold as i've seen it!   I may go out and clear some tracks down our road as it's a skid pan, and with everybody thinking the way to drive is at 7000rpm in first gear all they're doing is polishing it off even more.  Still, for now, i've come back in for a warm, a brew and a spot of breakfast...  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #66 on: December 21, 2010, 02:28:55 pm »

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everybody thinking the way to drive is at 7000rpm in first gear all they're doing is polishing it off even more.
Yeah, seen a lot of that, also had by car bumped up the rear end by someone who doesn't appreciate that ABS really isn't effective on polished ice. (Apparently no damage done fortunately) I find the issue with my car is that, having got underway with gentle throttle in 2nd or 3rd, when the speed rises to 10-15 mph the turbo kicks in, one wheel starts spinning & the car turns hard in the direction of the wheel that's lost traction. Takes a lot of care.

Still no sign of gritters ....
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« Reply #67 on: December 21, 2010, 05:29:10 pm »

grit is useless after -7 and the roads are hard ice so the grit is pointless, sand might give some traction. im usually sitting in 5th about 20mph to get going.
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« Reply #68 on: December 21, 2010, 07:38:56 pm »

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grit is useless after -7 and the roads are hard ice so the grit is pointless, sand might give some traction.
Well I agree that sand or ash would be better but the Carrickfergus rock salt that NI Roads Service uses contains quite a lot of grit.

Not sure where -7 comes from - the eutectic point for sodium chloride & water is -18C = 0F in fact that is what defines the zero point on the Fahrenheit scale. Obviously salt is less effective as the temp falls but this is offset quite a lot by the crystalline structure of ice becoming increasingly amporphous as the temp drops.

The real fun will come when the top surface of the ice melts ... that's why it's so important to get the grit down so there is something to give some traction.

BTW max here today was -4.1C, temp at the moment is a record -11.2C with partly clear sky & patchy fog. Bear in mind I'm only 200 metres from the ocean with a surface temp around +10C at this time of year.
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« Reply #69 on: December 21, 2010, 08:19:13 pm »

Not sure where -7 comes from - the eutectic point for sodium chloride & water is -18C = 0F
I agree with Brian, it is still effective at -10C or so. But when it comes into -20's (it rarely does here) salt becomes ineffective for sure, and the roads become a real icy horror.

The real fun will come when the top surface of the ice melts ...
Not so cold at the moment in Poltava, but the roads are involved into continuos cycle: melting - freezing - polishing - melting etc. Conditions are just perfect for it: +3C daytime, -3C at night. I can post an image of this horror tomorrow if anybody wants.
...But you don't know the most interesting fact about it! I'm learning to drive and having my first practice at the city streets at the moment! Funny, isn't it?  Wink
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« Reply #70 on: December 21, 2010, 08:28:53 pm »

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I'm learning to drive and having my first practice at the city streets at the moment!
I think most people in Eastern Europe use winter tyres ... us lot in the UK don't get severe weather, of course, so we don't bother with such namby pamby stuff  Grin The repair shops do good business  Undecided
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martinastro
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« Reply #71 on: December 21, 2010, 09:23:35 pm »

- 17.7 C in NI last night and the Met Office say - 20 is possible tonight  Smiley

Enjoy your lessons Roman, I have been getting alot of practice driving in the snow this last year, I got my test last Nov and was suddenly thrown into an extreme Winter for several months and just learned from then on through my own mistakes. This is year I have been doing day and night driving with great results using the front wheel drive sleigh  Smiley. I find that 2nd and 3rd gear is the best with a slow speed, make no sudden steering motions, don't rev too much, and use the clutch. Starting off in 2nd on ice/snow works wonders....and make sure you have a shovel in the boot  Smiley

Best of luck with the driving and enjoy the snow.
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« Reply #72 on: December 21, 2010, 09:23:57 pm »

Mark-yes, we had a couple of inches here but the powdery stuff. I had to walk on a 6 mile round trip to the butchers this morning..I couldn't even open the hatchback door  of my car to get my shopping bags out-I avoid using plastic bags. I tried some warm water but it made no difference so I left it. The buses stopped yesterday and a limited service on main roads today. At least we've got  back -1C at the moment (9.23pm Tuesday)
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Roman White
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« Reply #73 on: December 22, 2010, 07:20:36 am »

winter tyres ...
For sure. Summer ones are equal to suicide in current conditions. Don't know whether my feet have winter rubber, but yesterday I was close to falling and tasting the ice on my face for several times, even at 2 km/h  Grin

Thanks for the advice Martin  Wink
-20C would be cold as for your location close to the ocean, I guess
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« Reply #74 on: December 22, 2010, 11:05:18 am »

Yet another 5-6 inches snow on top of the 10 inches from Saturday here in Redditch Worcestershire and still snowing. The local lanes are only passable for tractors and 4X4s even mine struggled in places, its hard to tell where the ditches meet the side of the road. Hopefully some of the kind farmers will clear the route to the horses today to make life a little easier. Just had a call from a friend to say their conservatory roof and part of the timer frame work has collapsed due to the weight of snow.
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