Driving condtions are treacherous The current snowfalls, experienced in the UK since a week before Christmas 2009 and still active on 8th January 2010, have certainly caused havoc.

  • Schools up and down the country are closed.
  • Hospital accident and emergency departments are struggling to treat the injured.
  • Airports are closed.
  • Train and Bus services have been disrupted.
  • Gas supplies are reported to be running out.
  • Grit, salt and sand necessary to combat the snow are at extremely low levels.
  • Mail deliveries and refuse collections are absent in many towns and cities.
  • Supplies are not reaching stores.
  • Outpatient clinics have been cancelled.
  • and of course so much more.

Breakdowns and accidents galorePretty as a picture but desolateNo wonder Hospitals are busy

When a crisis strikes, no matter how seemingly insignificant it is, one of two things happen. What is it they say about, when the going gets tough the tough get going.

Sometimes trouble on a large scale fosters a community spirit, whilst other times it makes people more insular and selfish.

The current heavy snowfalls and freezing cold weather has certainly brought out the good, the bad and the ugly in people.

Most of us are already fed up of the weather and are constantly moaning about the snow. After all, that is a British pastime. However, some people have been more severly affected than others.

Many people have jumped on the badwagon and simply taken the easy option. They have stayed away from work in their droves which has added to the chaos.

Now, I am not advocating unnecessary travel but, some of this behaviour has made it more difficult for those with little alternative than to stay at home. Whilst I applaud the determination of people such as the woman who walked 15 miles to work at a restaurant, I also feel that such behaviour is rather silly. If her work had been of a more essential nature her effort would have been understandable.

However, we should never forget that such actions could put the safety of others in jeopardy, if something were to go wrong. Rescue services, which are already under stretched to breaking point, would have had to attempt a rescue.

It is a matter of getting the balance right.

We should not quickly deride those who do not make it into work, as everyone's personal circumstances are different. Neither, though should we use the snow as an excuse to be a slacker.

As some people begin to fall into the selfish survival mode, many are forgetting elderly or infirm neighbours, friends and accquaintances, who may be really struggling.

Please try and give a little thought to those people you know who need some of your time and attention.

Some may need:-

  • Help to attend appointments.
  • A little grocery shopping.
  • Someone to pick up their prescription medicine.
  • Paths or driveways clearing.
  • A dog walking or feeding.
  • A warm drink, or the like, especially if their power supply is interrupted.
  • Assistance in keeping warm.
  • A newspaper collecting.
  • A bill paying.
  • Maybe even, simply, a little company.

Be careful when you ask anyone if they need help though.

Word your request tactfully, so as not to offend. Elderly people are often very proud and hate to have to accept help.

Do not knock on an elderly or infirm person's door once it is dark, unless you know them very well.

Do not force help upon them but rather just make them aware of your offer of help.

Perhaps you could give them a telephone call instead, even if you only live next door.

Even London has seen snow Finally

Really all I am saying is try and be thoughtful. If you see someone struggling see if you can help.

If you see someone fall, offer assistance. It may only be their pride that's hurt but you never know. Even a young person who falls may need some help.

Good manners and courtesy may not be fashionable these days but a little thought goes a long way and is usually appreciated. Who knows it could be you who needs help in the future.