York & North Yorkshire

Blizzard traps drivers in North Yorkshire

Police and coastguards were called out to help a number of drivers stuck in cars after a snap blizzard hit the Whitby area of North Yorkshire.

Police took calls on Christmas Eve from motorists stuck on steep routes including Blue Bank, near Sleights, and Lythe Bank, near Sandsend.

The A169 between Sleights and Lockton has been closed, police said.

Humber Coastguard said it had been assisting police after the arrival of the heavy snow.

A spokeswoman said the Whitby Coastguard Rescue Team used 4x4 vehicles to transport police officers to areas around Whitby where vehicles were stranded.

Drivers warned

She said the Blue Bank area - the A169 from the Esk Valley up to Goathland - was badly affected.

North Yorkshire Police said about a dozen vehicles became stranded on that stretch of road which was later closed to traffic and was expected to remain closed overnight as temperatures dropped well below freezing.

The motorists were being helped out on to the main road, a force spokesman said.

Gritters had been sent out to the area and would remain until about 2300 GMT on Christmas Eve.

Humber Coastguard Watch Officer Katie Gellatly said: "Along with other authorities, we urge road users to venture out only when absolutely necessary throughout this current spell of bad weather.

"Police and coastguards were called to help a number of drivers stuck in cars."

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