For the fifth day this week, travel and transport are being disrupted across Grampian, Highlands and the northern isles due to severe weather.
The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning for snow and ice which covers most of the north of Scotland today.
As gritters work to reopen roads throughout the Highlands and northeast, there’s a worry progress could be tampered by icy conditions into the weekend.
The Met Office issued another yellow weather warning for ice for areas of the Highlands, and all of Orkney and Shetland.
There are further wind and rain warnings coming throughout the weekend as Storm Isha arrives in northern Scotland.
As a result, some roads have been closed and public transport services are facing major disruption.
A number of schools and nurseries have delayed openings or are completely closed to staff and pupils amid the ongoing snow.
To read a full list of school closures, click here.
Here is a round-up of the current picture across the north of Scotland:
Challenging road conditions
Conditions were still tricky this morning and motorists are advised to only make essential journeys.
Most roads are still covered in snow with gritters being sent out to tackle priority routes.
The yellow warning will remain in place until 3pm with experts advising snow showers will then turn to rain creating an ice hazard – with an ice warning added in the north.
The severe weather is expected to continue over the weekend as the arrival of Storm Isha brings strong winds and heavy rain.
Yesterday, a section of the A9 was closed at Helmsdale after a number of vehicles became stuck in the road.
It remained closed for most of the night before reopening at about 4.30am. Gritter crews have made progress in the Highlands, with all road closures in Sutherland lifting shortly after 4:30pm.
Orkney Islands Council issued an urgent warning to residents last night urging them to stay at home or indoors.
On Friday council the council urged people to “think twice” before heading out the roads. Later around 5:30pm, the council reported the majority of major roads were cleared, although a tractor and a gritter were damaged in the process.
Both Shetland Islands Council and Police Scotland urged residents to avoid travel unless its essential.
Around 2pm, Police Scotland said progress was being made in clearing the roads, with the wind having died down.
Around 3:30pm, the council said crews had made progress on tackling snow drifts on a number of the major roads. Those are now “passable with extreme care.”
Although a police spokesperson warned of “hazardous icy conditions by morning,” with the Met Office’s yellow ice warning looming.
All road closures in Sutherland were lifted around 4:30pm, as gritters continued to work on the roads.
That includes the B9176 Struie road.
A896 closed from Torridon to Kinlochewe re-opened around 4pm.
The following roads have been closed:
- B9007 Dunearn to Carrbridge road will remain closed over the weekend
- B9031 in Banff and Buchan
- Glen Dye/Cairn O’Mount snow gates on the B974 at the Bridge of Dye
Following days of disruption on train lines, some services have been able to resume today.
A snow plough has been working overnight to clear the Far North Line but it is not yet safe to reopen the line.
Due to hazardous road conditions, no replacement buses have been put in place.
Far North Line: A number of trains between Inverness and Wick have been cancelled. Replacement busses were running. But snow ploughs have cleared the tricks and trains are running again.
Aberdeen to Glasgow/Edinburgh: Services have resumed between Arbroath and Dundee but check in advance for delays.
Aberdeen to Inverness: Services are running again but check in advance for delays.
Inverness to Glasgow/ Edinburgh: Services will run but with delays of up to 15 minutes. Some journeys will start or terminate in Perth and have a bus replacement.
Orkney: Sailings have resumed as scheduled but may face disruption.
CalMac: The Mallaig/Oban to Lochboisdale and Oban to Castlebay services have been cancelled for the rest of the day. Other routes may be delayed or cancelled last-minute.
There are no significant changes to flight schedules from Aberdeen or Inverness.
Sumburgh Airport was initially open but closed at 2pm, cancelling the remaining flights for the day.
A number of flights departing from Kirkwall Airport have been cancelled throughout the morning.
This includes flights to Edinburgh, Sumburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Inverness.
Passengers are advised to check their flight with the airline in advance.
Bus services across the region are reporting service disruption and are asking people to check ahead.
Stagecoach Highland has confirmed all services are suspended in Orkney and Caithness, while some delays are being reported in the Inverness area.
Meanwhile, Stagecoach Bluebird has reported morning delays to its 34, 202, 301 and 303 services.
No public bus services are running in Shetland today.
If you see a road that is closed or transport disruption please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org