Icy conditions cause crashes across Scotland

M8 jams
Image caption The closure of part of the M8 caused major rush-hour tailbacks

A series of crashes in icy conditions caused disruption on Scotland's roads, as many people returned to work after the festive break.

The M8 in North Lanarkshire was closed for more than three hours during the morning rush hour due to black ice.

The M9 near Stirling was also closed between junctions 8 and 9 after a multi-vehicle crash.

And there were diversions on the A9 after the death of a 16-year-old girl near Auchterarder on Tuesday night.

Tayside Police said the girl, who has not been identified, died after being hit by a number of vehicles.

In South Lanarkshire, an elderly couple died after being hit by a lorry in Hamilton at about 0945 GMT.

Emma and Jake Grier, who were both 76 and from nearby Motherwell, were hit by the vehicle in Townhead Street and died later in hospital.

A man also died after being hit by a car on a stretch of road near Conon Bridge in the Highlands.

The M9 was closed after a multi-vehicle collision at about 0815 GMT, about half a mile south of the Pirnhall service station.

A police car attending the crash was also involved in a collision with another car but no-one was injured.

Image caption Diversions were put in place on a section of the M9 after a multi-vehicle crash

Traffic was diverted along the M876, and motorists were advised to avoid the area.

There were several collisions on the M876, but no one was injured.

The M8, the main route from Edinburgh to Glasgow, was shut at Shotts from before 0700 GMT until 1030 GMT as gritters tried to clear the motorway.

Scotland's Transport Minister Keith Brown, who spent the morning at the Traffic Scotland control room, said roads had been sufficiently gritted.

He also said he had witnessed some very dangerous manoeuvres from drivers.

"Sometimes there is some driver behaviour which exacerbates the problems that are there as well," he said.

Meanwhile, Northern Constabulary said snow was affecting driving conditions on the A82 at Glencoe.

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